The Federal Executive Council presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari for six hours has approved the full audit of Dana Air operations in the country.
In the first days after one of the emergency doors of a Dana Air aircraft conveying passengers fell off on landing at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, another aircraft belonging to the same Dana Airline had on February 21st, overshot the runway at the Port Harcourt International Airport, Rivers State, causing fear and panic.
Both incidents appeared to be a typical example of slack practices by some airlines operated from Nigeria.A
Though no life was lost; all the passengers and crew disembarked to safety, the federal government Wednesday said it was concerned about the safety of travelers.
“A lot of quality time was spent discussing air safety. The government of Nigeria is very much concerned about safety and the life of Nigerians, this is following the recent air incidents minor as they were because they are no fatalities, the government did feel concern and the minister did the report to the council on steps that were taken following the last incident in Port Harcourt, Dana aircraft overshooting the runaway, said Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu.
“As soon as that happened, a few seconds, a rescue team was there on the ground and few moments thereafter every passenger on board was evacuated, they was no harm to persons and this is something that should be celebrated, he said.
“Within 24 hours an official investigation had commenced because investigators arrived in Port Harcourt and began work. One week after that a preliminary report was prepared and it was on this that the council was briefed.
“Consequently as announced by the aviation authorities, the engineer and Pilot of that particular aircraft got their licences both suspended and beyond that the government has ordered a complete audit of Dana airlines in terms of personel, operations, technical capacity.”
Nigerian passengers have on various occasions complained about the aging fleet of aircraft used by Dana airlines.
The real problem exposed by the aftermath of both incidents — how to make sure old planes are fit to fly by standardizing wide aircraft maintenance in the country.