by ‘Jola Sotubo
Following the recent Associated Airlines plane crash which claimed the lives of at least 13 people and injured a number of others, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) yesterday announced the suspension of all operations of the airline.
The suspension of Associated Aviation Limited, who are the owners of the airline, was announced at a press briefing in Lagos by the Director-General of the NCAA, Fola Akinkuotu.
Captain Akinkuotu disclosed the development at the General Hospital in the Ikeja area of the state during a visit to the survivors of the crash who are undergoing treatment at the hospital.
The Eagle Online reports:
Akinkuotu said: “The operations of Associated Airlines have been suspended by the NCAA.
“Let me say for the purpose of clarity: all the operations of Associated Airlines have been suspended by the NCAA.
“I did not say any certification was cancelled but all the operations of the airline have been suspended.”
Akinkuotu recalled that the ill-fated aircraft was certified airworthy before its last flight, adding that sustained airworthiness certification of an airplane was the responsibility of the airline itself.
He stressed that there was nothing contrary to the information provided by the airline on the state of the aircraft, adding that the insurance company handling the airline’s insurance had provided documents about the state of its insurance.
The NCAA boss vowed the agency would continue to apply all regulatory rules on all airlines.
Akinkuotu, who noted that the injured victims of the crash were responding positively to treatment, commended the management of the hospital for its state-of-the-art equipment.
The chartered airplane ferrying the remains of former Governor Olusegun Agagu of Ondo State and 20 other passengers crashed in Ikeja shortly after take-off.
Thirteen of the 20 passengers died in the crash, while seven survivors are receiving treatment in the state hospital.