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Nigeria Air expects aircraft to land on Friday for official unveiling, says Aviation Minister

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The Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, on Wednesday, confirmed the national carrier, Nigeria Air will commence operation before the expiry of the President Mohammadu Buhari administration on May 29 as a plane for the airline will arrive in the country on Friday.

In an interview with Channels Television, the minister said that a Nigeria Air aircraft will land in the country in two days as part of the process to commence operations and unveil the delivery process.

He promised that the aircraft would be unveiled in Nigeria’s colors in fulfillment of all the promises made by the administration in the aviation sector.

He, however, noted that the only incomplete item is the aeropolis, which is the airport city and is 60 percent complete.

According to him, the groundwork has been completed, and we are looking to conclude work on the airport city by the next administration.

Sirika had said at an aviation stakeholder’s forum in Abuja in March that Nigeria Air will commence full operations before the end of the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.

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Responding to a question on when exactly Nigeria Air will commence operations, the minister said, “Before the end of this administration, before May 29th, we will fly.”

He added that the Federal Government is leaving the aviation sector better than it met it, having achieved over 90% of the aviation sector road map.

In a report on Monday, Global Financial Digest catelogued the failure of the Buhari administration in bringing to pass its promise to berth the national carrier during his tenure according to his campaign promises.

The report stated that Buhari’s well-touted plans to float a national carrier, Nigeria Air has failed to materialise seven days to the expiry of his tenure despite huge resources committed to the project by his administration.

The administration had blamed its failure to deliver on court cases filed by aviation stakeholders against the structure of ownership of the proposed airline.

The Special Assistant to Sirika on Media, James Odaudu, argued that the court case, which slowed down the processes for the new airline, could be settled between the Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON) and the federal government.

According to him, before the court case commenced, the entire process for the new airline was almost complete. “I don’t want to be quoted on a matter that is in the court of law, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t enough time for the matter to be settled even in the court.

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