Abuja (Sundiata Post) – Hope of the outgoing minister of aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika to float a new national carrier, Nigeria Air before the government exits the stage on May 29th has again been dashed as the Federal High Court sitting in Lagos has stopped the Director General of Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority, (NCAA) from issuing Air Operator’s Certificate (AOC) to the airline.
Honourable Justice A. Lewis Allagoa granted orders of interim and interlocutory injunctions in the terms contained in the order, restraining taking of any step in relation to the Nigeria Air project.
A letter dated 19th April 2023 to notify the NCAA of the restraining order by the plaintiff’s lawyer Abubakar Nuhu Ahmed, Esq. of Nureini Jimoh (SAN) Chambers read: “You are therefore notified to desist from dealing with the Minister/the Ministry of Aviation and/ or their agents, privies or representatives, pertaining the Air Operator Certificate (AOC), subject matter of the suit, to avoid consequences of disobedience of court orders.
“As a law abiding Regulatory Agency, you are under the watchful eyes of the world and it is in your interest to desist from any further action on AOC process that will ridicule the integrity of the Agency before the local media as well as the Global Aviation Community.”
Some local airlines in Nigeria had sued the federal government, asking the court to stop the new national carrier as it would get unfair advantages over other airlines.
In the originating summons of the suit, the plaintiffs formulated five questions for the court to determine, one of which is to determine “whether the entire process for the sale and transfer of shares of the 1st defendant to the 2nd defendant and its consortium by the 3rd and 4th defendants is in line with the provisions of the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (Est.) Act, 2005, Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Act, International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Convention, the National Policy on Public Private Partnership (N4P), sections 76-81 of the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Act, and does not affect the entire process including the selection, approval or grant to the 2nd defendant and its consortium by the 3rd and 4th defendants is not invalid and thereby entitling the entire process to fresh bidding exercise?”
Source: Sundiata Post
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