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Over 50 Airlines Grounded Since Independence
From Abdullateef Aliyu, Lagos
While most of the airlines were owned by Nigerians, others were jointly owned with partners from countries in Africa and Europe. Few of the airlines lasted for more than one year in operation.
Some of the airlines brought aircraft but never conveyed passengers before they went under.
Nigerian Airways Limited (NAL), established in 1958, two years before independence, was the mother of all the defunct airlines.
The NAL was liquidated in 2004 by former president Olusegun Obasanjo.
Following the liquidation of the national carrier, many Nigerian airlines were established but did not see the light of the day.
The defunct airlines included Flash Airline; Hold Trade Airline; Gas Air; Jambo Express; Chachangi; IRS Airlines, Savannah Airline, Albarka Airline; Intercontinental Airline; Air Mid-West; and HAK Air.
Others were EAS Airline; Nicon Airways; Virgin Nigeria Airline; Air Nigeria; Falcon Air; Sosoliso Airline; Zenith Airline; Barnas Airline; Space World International Airline; Dasab Airline; Fresh Airline; Trias Airline; Bell-View; Freedom Airline; Okada Air; Concord Airline (owned by the late Chief MKO Abiola); Associated Airline and Air Taraba (serving Taraba, Bornu and Adamawa states).
The list also included United Air Service; Aras Airline Ltd; Nigeria Global; Nigeria Eagle (which commissioned an aircraft but didn’t fly and had to take the aircraft back); Harco Airline; Premier Airline; Al Bashir; Trans-Sahara Airline; ADC; Oriental Airline; Axiom Airline; Forward Air; Flok Air; Das Air and Cargo.
Med-View Completes Hajj Return Trips
Med-View Airline PLC yesterday completed the airlift of pilgrims for the 2016 Hajj back to Nigeria.
The airline, one of the three carriers contracted by the National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) for the 2016 Hajj operations, was the first to complete the in-bound operations.
The other two airlines are Max Air and Fly NAS.
Med-View’s last two flights for the NAHCON assignment arrived Port Harcourt International airport and Kaduna International Airport respectively yesterday.
The flight to Port Harcourt had pilgrims from Rivers, Edo, Delta, Abia, Anambra, Imo, Ebonyi and Cross River states.
The Port Harcourt flight departed Jeddah at 1:19 hrs with 122 Rivers pilgrims; 89 from Delta; Ebonyi 60, Cross River 47; Imo 42; Anambra 35; Abia 18, Enugu 8 and eight officials.
Managing Director and CEO of the airline, Alhaji Muneer Bankole commended NAHCON and the Federal Government for the necessary structures put in place to ensure a hitch-free Hajj exercise.