…airlines reassures travellers of safety
By Sade Williams
Dana Air management said on Thursday that it is ready for the planned audit by the Federal government, saying the safety of its guests is uppermost in its operations.
The decision to audit the airline may not be unconnected with the serious incident at Port Harcourt International Airport, where one of its MD83 airplanes marked 5N-SRI skidded off the runway recently.
The incident was suspected to have been caused by a heavy rain, which was accompanied by strong wind and storm in Port Harcourt as no casualty was recorded.
The airline, which thanked the Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) for releasing the preliminary report on the Port Harcourt runway incident involving one of aircraft on February 23, 2018, also spoke about its fleet expansion programme.
A statement signed by communications manager for the airline Kingsley Ezenwa, said: “We therefore welcome the recent audit ordered by the Federal Government and we are willing to work with the team and the FG to demonstrate our commitment not just to flying but to flying safe.
“Our route and fleet expansion program is still very much on course and we remain dedicated to our recent interline and aircraft partnership with Asky airline, another formidable airline in Africa.
According to him, excerpts of the reports confirmed that the Air Traffic Control, an arm of the Nigerian Air Space Management Agency that is saddled with the responsibility of issuing instructions, that the pilots are required to obey, had cleared the pilot in command to land.
He said it is pertinent to note that the pilot of that flight is a happily married man and a proud father of three beautiful children.
He explained that the pilot has over 30 years of experience in the aviation industry and is one of the very best in his profession, meticulous in his duties, and headhunted from another domestic airline where he also served as the head of safety and quality standards.
“Considering the safety measures that we have put in place and our huge investment in training and retraining of our crew and pilots, we decided not to join issues, but to rather wait on the report of the AIB, the authentic body responsible for such investigations.
“In 2013, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) and its foreign partners, the Flight Safety Group, carried out an audit on our operations and in 2016, as a result of our commitment to global safety standards, we applied to become a member of the International Air Transport Association (IATA), went through their audit and subsequently became a member in 2016.
“We wish to thank the Honourable minister of state for aviation, Hadi Sirika, who has proven himself as a technocrat, and our esteemed guests for keeping faith with us while the incident was under investigation and we wish to reassure our guests of our commitment towards providing safe, reliable and affordable air transport”, he added.