Fraud Uncovered: The Nigeria Air That Never Took off

Ethiopian Airlines Emerge as Core Investor in Nigerian Air (News Central TV)
Nigeria’s Aviation minister Hadi Sirika speaks following a press conference at the Farnborough Airshow, south west of London, on July 18, 2018. – The Nigerian government launched plans on Wednesday to create new flag carrier airline Nigeria Air by the end of this year. “I am pleased to tell you that we are finally on track to launching a new national flag carrier for our country: Nigeria Air,” Sirika announced. (Photo by Adrian DENNIS / AFP)

The highly questionable launch of Nigeria Air has raised suspicions and concerns among industry analysts, Nigerian citizens, and aviation enthusiasts.

Not only were there discrepancies in the flight history, age, and ownership of the Nigeria Air aircraft, but dissent also emerged within the aviation sector. The audacity of this fraudulent scheme became glaringly apparent when the aircraft was promptly returned to Ethiopia after its so-called launch in Nigeria, exposing the deceitful nature of the operation.

In light of these developments, investigative efforts have been launched to delve deeper into the Nigeria Air scandal. In an enlightening interview with Breakfast Central on News Central TV, Nigerian journalist David Hundeyin further dissects the intricate issues surrounding this fraudulent endeavour.

Hundeyin highlighted the gravity of the situation, emphasising the need for an investigation into the Nigeria Air scam. The activist speculated that the response, or lack thereof, from the government would serve as a testament to any distinction between the Buhari administration and a potential future Tinubu government. Expressing his scepticism, he doubted that the current government would take action in scrutinising the matter.

“The brazenness of this scam came to its head when the aircraft was sent back to Ethiopia after it ‘launched’ in Nigeria,” Hundeyin said.

“This is where you will know if there is any distinction between Buhari government and the Tinubu government, if the current government doesn’t investigate the Nigeria Air scam…I don’t believe they will investigate it anyway,” Hundeyin added.

The revelation that the airplane that arrived at Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja on May 26, 2023, was a chartered plane from Ethiopian Airlines has sparked outrage among Nigerians.

Calls for the arrest and prosecution of the former Aviation Minister, Hadi Sirika, have resonated across the internet. During a Senate inquiry, Dayo Olumide, the Managing Director of Nigeria Air, admitted that the airplane had been chartered and had actually been launched in 2018. Olumide clarified that his role primarily revolved around obtaining the airline’s operating certificate.


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