Ahead of the planned resumption of international flights into Nigeria, the Nigerian government has given approval to 14 airlines to fly into the country’s airspace.
The approved airlines include; Middle East Airlines, Lebanon; British Airways; United Kingdom; Delta Airlines, USA; Qatar Airways, Qatar; Ethiopian Airlines, Ethiopia; Egypt Air, Egypt; Air Peace, Nigeria.
Others are; Virgin Atlantic, United Kingdom; Asky Airlines, Togo; Africa World Airways, Ghana; Air Cote d’ivoire, Cote d’ivoire; Kenya Airways, Kenya; Emirates Airlines, UAE; and Turkish Airlines, Turkey.
The Nigerian Aviation Minister, Sen. Hadi Sirika who disclosed this while speaking in Abuja on Thursday at the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 Media briefing, said the approved airlines can fly into Nigeria airspace effective September 5, 2020.
Giving reason for the restricted airlines, the minister said for Air France, KLM and Lufthansa, tourists business holders are not allowed entry while Etihad Airways is open to citizens and residents only.
Restriction to Royal Air Maroc, TAAG Angola and Air Namibia is due to non-resumption of international flights to the countries while Rwanda Air was due to non-compliance with Foreign Carrier Operating Permit (FCOP), and South African is not applicable as COVID-19 Health Protocols yet to be released.
Sirika while speaking on the two approved airports for the international flights, said, “The two airports, Abuja and Lagos will be open for operations on the 5th of this month (September).
“We are satisfied with the preparations so far, we don’t anticipate any hitches. Before we go over the procedures on what has changed, I would quickly go over the airlines and the timetable.
“Saturday, for Lagos there will be BA, Delta, Emirates, Qatar, AWA, Kenya Airways and Middle East airlines while for Abuja there will be BA, Egypt Air, Emirates, Ethiopian Airlines, AWA, Middle East Airlines and Turkish. And then we will release to you the time table for the remaining days as we go, to save time.” Sirika remarked.
Recall that the Nigerian government had moved the date for international flights resumption from August 29 to September 5, 2020.