The Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA says a private jet operator has been caught for allegedly converting its aircraft for charter services.
The Director General, NCAA, Captain Musa Nuhu who disclosed this during an online interview with the Chairman, Africa Business Aviation Association, AfBAA, Mr. Nike Fadugba, said, the NCAA was able to achieve the feat due to the mechanisms put in place to identify these illegal operators, adding that the full weight of the law would be applied to such operator.
He explained that, it enforces sanction regime on charter operations, which includes fines and certificate sanctions and also has what is called the permit for non-commercial flights, PNCF, which is given to the private operators.
The NCAA boss stated that, the private operators were required to file monthly reports on the number of flights conducted with passenger manifest for them to look and determine that these were legal charter operations.
According to him, the NCAA enforcement team had recommended the operator caught been given a 60 days suspension of its certificate in addition to a fine.
“We are dealing with actually one of the PNCF, the enforcement team have recommended 60 days suspension of their certificate in addition to fine, so they have a period of 30 days for which to get back to us or protest or bring evidence that we ask them”.
Commenting on the feat, a charter operator, Captain Ibrahim Mshelia said, the NCAA needed to up its game by increasing the sanctions to serve as a deterrent to would-be violators of the civil aviation regulations.
He noted that such illegal operations were robbing government and the its aviation agencies of their revenue and taxes.
“That is a crime against the economy of the country, why can you just give that kind of simple punishment?”.
Captain Mshelia who had consistently complained of these illegal services said, it was not easy to flush out such activities because there were powerful people behind it.
He implored other security agencies of government to support the NCAA in stopping this black market in the system.
“There are power people behind all this illegal things going on, if there are not it could have been easy to flush out. NCAA is determined, we are appealing, the SSS should support them, there is nobody that enters an aircraft, that travels within the airport that SSS doesn’t know, everybody they know, they should be out open and help”.
Captain Mshelia suggested that, the regulatory agency hand over operator found culpable of such illegal activities to the security agencies for proper prosecution.