*Massive flight disruptions flagged off with the first flight out of Lagos
*About N100m loss from the refund and other operational expenses incurred
*Cost of repair of damaged part in forex still being computed
*Nahco-Aviance vehemently rebuffs the insinuation of sabotage, saying it’s an act of God
*NSIB findings and recommendations anxiously awaited
Nigeria’s leading flag carrier, Air Peace, today experienced about N100 million loss in its operations, as it was inadvertently compelled to delay some of its flights beginning from the first flight out of Lagos in the morning while a few others were canceled.
The delay in the first flight was a sequel to an incident in which a Nahco stairs equipment driver rammed into Air Peace aircraft when boarding was about to commence and succeeded in damaging the aircraft elevator.
The affected aircraft was an Airbus A320 with the registration number: A320 ES-SAZ.
The cost for repairs of the damaged stairs is still being computed taking cognizance of the fluctuating foreign exchange market, and the unavailability of forex.
Also, checks conducted revealed this was the third time the ground handling company’s equipment would be damaging its client’s aircraft in less than 30 days.
According to the spokesperson of Air Peace, Olisa Stanley, “before the incident occurred, the aircraft was scheduled to airlift passengers from Lagos to Owerri for a 7a.m flight, while the same airplane was positioned for about 10 flights on the day of the incident”, he said.
However, Olisa suspected that Air Peace operations were being sabotaged by some people in the sector if not the ground handling company, and wondered if it was meant to reduce the airline’s capacity.
An adage says once beaten twice shy, not when the airline’s equipment was damaged on three different occasions and in quick succession in less than a month; without an iota of doubt, calls for the attention of both the regulator and the incident investigator.
Olisa added that the airline had made a formal complaint to NAHCO’s management about the untoward development.
Dr. Sola Obabori, the Group Executive Director, Business and Corporate Services, Nahco, confirmed the incident and vehemently rebuffed the notion of any act of sabotage.
Obabori said the incident was a pure case of an unforeseen occurrence as every staff of Nahco at the airside holds current licenses and was validly accredited as the company had never reneged in offering up-to-date statutory training to all its personnel.
He said Nahco’s management had filed a report with the appropriate authorities about the incident while the company had commenced an engagement with the airline on the incident.Share