Stories from Suleiman Idris, Lagos
The Nigerian aviation sector’s current robust indices is estimated to continue to grow by 5% and enable airlines contribute about $0.4 billion and additional 61, 000 jobs for emerging Nigerian economy by 2034.
An industry expert and special resource person at the Nigerian College of Aviation Technology Zaria, posited that with the air transport industry generating and supporting 6.7 million jobs in Africa and contributing USD $67.8billion to the continent’s GDP, Nigeria will soon become a leading destination.
Dr Titus Kehinde Olaniyi, who spoke on the topic ‘sustainable aircraft maintenance hangar the imperative for the Nigerian aviation industry’, said the air transport in the country has experience upswing since mid
1980’s and 1990’s with deregulation and emergence of domestic airlines in GDP.
He spoke at the National Executive Council seminar of the National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers (NAAPE) in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.
He however lamented that the forecasted growth in the sector is affected by the numbers of airlines that have become extinct with most of the early starters no longer operating.
He added that out of the 30 airlines operating in the 1990’s less than seven were carrying out schedules flights in 2010.
Olaniyi explained that ” inconsistent regulatory policies, deteriorating infrastructures with obsolete facilities, negligence and managerial incompetence contributed to the failings.
Airlines negligence of industry best practice in aircraft operations and maintenances has contributed to several aircraft crashes and folding up of the airlines while managerial incompetence led to fund misappropriation, manpower mismanagement and high indebtedness.”
Also a lack of sustainable aircraft maintenance hangars has negatively impacted on Nigerian airlines and their ability to operate sustainably in an inherently complex and dynamic global air transport industry.
The expert further said the systematic failure of the airline industry could be traced to unsustainable aircraft maintenance policies resulting from ageing aircraft, lack of appropriate maintenance
personnel, non availability of aircraft hangars where proper checks or maintenance can be carried out.
He said more domestic airlines will go out of business if urgent steps are not taken to provide a sustainable maintenance frame work including domesticated maintenance hangar in the country.
Olaniyi call on government to support airlines to build their hangars affirming that an MRO in the country will save airline huge revenue spent abroad on aircraft maintenance and reduce capital flight.