Ibom Airlines Limited (Ibom Air) says it will not be part of the planned shutdown of domestic operations.
Okay.ng recalls that the Airlines Operators of Nigeria (AON) had announced that its members would suspend flight services on Monday due to the high cost of aviation fuel (JetA1).
However, the management of Ibom Air in a statement issued on Saturday said obligations to its customers, suppliers and staff, would not allow it to participate in the shutdown.
The statement reads, “Ibom Air acknowledges the existential threat that these runaway fuel price increases pose for the air transport industry in Nigeria. We agree that this out-of-control situation is simply unsustainable. However, every airline has its unique business model and pressures. We believe that in spite of the escalating fuel prices, airlines volunteering to stop operations would rather exacerbate an already bad situation.
“Ibom Air has financial obligations to suppliers, financiers and staff, which depend on uninterrupted flow of revenue to service. More importantly is the fact that having been paid by customers in advance for flight bookings we are bound by contract to deliver the services already paid for, to avoid exposing the airline to the risk of avoidable litigation.
“Apart from the above factors, Ibom Air is currently the only airline serving Akwa Ibom State directly and as such, any voluntary stoppage of operations would completely cut off access by air into and out of the State. Such action would be directly in conflict with and detrimental to the interest of our shareholder.
“In view of the foregoing facts, Ibom Air had respectfully disagreed with the decision of AON to suspend flight operations on Monday 09 May, 2022. Ibom Air cannot in the circumstance volunteer to stop operating and will continue normal operations on Monday 09 May, 2022 and beyond.
“Ibom Air’s inclusion as “signatory” to the statement released by AON must have derived from its active and committed membership of the AON.”