Aero Contractors, Nigeria’s oldest airline said it has concluded plans to resume flights on Wednesday 21st December after shutting down for nearly four months.
The airline, which stopped scheduled services on September 1, 2016, due to lack of funds and its inability to pay for the maintenance of its aircraft, said it would resume operations with a few flights.
According to reports, the airline plans to resume flights with two Boeing B737-500s and one Bombardier Dash 8-300 and hopefully deploy two more Bombardier Dash 8-300s, within a week to bring its fleet to five.
A close source who confirmed the development disclosed that labour issues, which delayed the airline’s resumption of operations had been resolved and that the major condition given by the Assets Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) that the company must restructure, was being met.
This means that Aero will lay off some workers, a plan that has received the tacit agreement of labour and, according to the source, Aero Contractors over time would bring back all of its aircraft comprising six Boeing B737-500s and three turbo props Dash 8-300s.
“We plan to resume on Wednesday but it is work in progress. We intend to start gradually then ramp up. We already have two Boeing B737-500s and one Dash 8 on the ground but we hope to get two more within days.
“We have resolved issues with the unions. We are going to bring all our airplanes back over time. We have agreed to restructure, which is the condition given by AMCON.”
Resumption of operations by the airline will come as a relief to Nigerian travellers who have had their options limited since the aviation industry went into a tailspin.