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NCAA to come down hard on airlines over false schedules

The Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) on Tuesday threatened that it would come down hard on airlines engaged in deceitful departure time scheduling.

NCAA said the warning followed information that some some airlines were advertising deceitful departure times.

But NCAA, in a statement by its Acting Director-General, Capt. Chris Najomo signed by the Director, Public Affairs/Consumer Protection, Mr Michael Achimugu, on Tuesday said its regulation stated that no airline shall display deceitful passenger departure time at its counter, advert material or on its’ website

The NCAA warned the airlines to desist from the infraction or face dire regulatory actions.

“The NCAA now runs a zero-tolerance approach to regulatory infractions.

“Ease of doing business is the crux of the D-G’s action plan for the NCAA. In line with that action plan, he has made processes for licensing easy for operators.

“The time to secure AOC is now shorter and less cumbersome than it used to be in the past. The NCAA therefore expects reciprocity from airlines. Chief of which is world-class services to passengers,” he

Najomo was quoted as saying that, if the NCAA was enabling a business friendly environment for operators, then the operators must satisfy the passengers with superior services.

“It has come to our notice that some airlines are being reported for advertising deceitful departure times. The NCAA regulation says no airline shall display deceitful passenger departure time at its counter, advert material or on its’ website.

“We want to make it very clear that the D-GCA has directed monitoring and offenders will face serious regulatory actions,” Najomo said.

He further stated that the Authority believes in safety, discipline, and economic regulation which is evident in the recent suspension of ten Permits for Non Commercial Flights (PHCF) holders for failing to comply with the recertification advisory issued in April 2024.

Speaking to the ease of doing business environment at the NCAA, Najomo said the ease of business is an area the Authority would continue to improve.

“This is evident in our high score on the Presidential Enabling Business Council (PEBEC) ranking. Recently our sister agency scored 96 per cent but the NCAA scored 98.5 per cent which is an extremely high score.

“This is building from the commendable score of 71.04 per cent the NCAA scored during this year’s ICAO Security Audit.

“The numbers are improving and we will continue to do what we can to make the industry safer, and more secure for passengers and stakeholders,” he assured.

On the difficulty in refund processes by airlines, Najomo said all refunds by airlines must be done devoid of undue delays and the process should conclude in 14 working days regardless of the mode of purchase of the tickets.

On the suspension of PHCF licenses of ten operators, he explained that they were advised since April 2024 to commence the process for recertification but they refused to comply this they left the Authority with no option than to sanction them.

Najomo also cleared the air on the misconceptions and misinformation in a recent publication alleging that the law surrounding the suspension of 10 PHCFs were not in vogue among other accusations.

Describing the allegations, which he believed to be done in ignorance or mischief as fluid and unfounded, Najomo explained the Authority’s actions using the Civil Aviation Act 2022.

He said that the action taken by NCAA was part of its mandate to ensure compliance with the civil aviation law establishing it and the attendant regulations.

In order to sanitize the sector, NCAA re-affirmed its stance to rid the industry of illegal charter operators who might have inspired the publication. (NAN) www.nannews.ng

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