Nigerian Government Establishes Task Force on Illegal Private Charter Operations

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Nigeria’s Honourable Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development, Mr. Festus Keyamo (SAN) has established a “ministerial task force on illegal private charter operations and related matters.” This establishment according to the Minister is in alignment with two key objectives of his five-point agenda “Safety, infrastructure, support for local operators, human capacity development and revenue generation.”

According to the Minister, “the practice of illegal charter operations is thriving within the aviation industry, thereby undermining the efforts of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) and other regulatory bodies.”

“These illicit activities have not only resulted in significant financial losses to the Federal Government, but have also raised security and safety concerns as the operations of private aircraft owners have remained largely unchecked and unregulated. This has also resulted in using these private aircrafts for other illegal activities,” said the Honourable Minister.

Also, the ministry has “received alarming reports that some crew members have not attended mandatory simulator trainings for nearly three years and are flying with fraudulently-obtained renewed licenses. Many of these individuals are operating planes registered under PNCF but are conducting illegal charter operations with impunity.”

The Minister said that in light of these grave concerns and in alignment with two key objectives of his five-point agenda that he is compelled to “announce the establishment of the Ministerial Task Force on Illegal Private Charter Operations and Related Matters.”

The task force made up of people of high repute and integrity including “Capt. Ado Sanusi – Chairman; Capt. Roland lyayi – Vice Chairman; Director of Air Transport, FMA&AD – Secretary and Theresa A. Babaoye (DATR-NCAA), One Nominee from the National Security Adviser, Capt. Daniel Quansah, Capt. Patrick Ogunlowo and Obafemi Bajomo (SA-HMA) as members.”

The Task Force has the following terms of reference:

  1. To take inventory of all PNCF holders and AOC holders.
  2. To determine why the practice of illegal charters by PNCF holders persists in the country despite regulatory controls.
  3. To call in all professional licenses of pilots and crew in the country and determine their authenticity and validity.
  4. To recommend to the Minister any additional measures to be taken by regulatory agencies to stem this ugly tide.
  5. To recommend appropriate sanctions to be imposed by the regulatory agencies on defaulters.
  6. To recommend additional measures to further monitor the operations and activities of private aircraft in Nigeria
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