Anger, despair have continued to trail the planned suspension of operations by the 63 year-old Aero Contractors Nigeria Limited.
This is contained in a statement issued by the company and made available to newsmen in Lagos on Monday.
According to the statement, the suspension does not affect Aero’s other businesses.
”These businesses are not suspended; the Approved Maintenance Organisation otherwise known as AeroMRO; the Approved Training Organisation also known as Aero Training School or the Helicopter and Charter Services operations”, it said.
The statement read, “Due to the impact of the challenging operating environment on our daily operations, the management of Aero Contractors Company of Nig. Ltd. wishes to announce the temporary suspension of its scheduled passenger services operations with effect from Wednesday, July 20, 2022.
“This does not in any way affect the maintenance activities of the Approved Maintenance Organisation known as AeroMRO, the Approved Training Organisation also known as Aero Training School, the Helicopter and Charter Services operations.
“This decision is carefully considered and taken due to the fact that most of our aircraft are currently undergoing maintenance, resulting in our inability to offer a seamless and efficient service to our esteemed customers.
“We are working to bring these aircraft back in the next few weeks, so we can continue to offer our passengers the safe, efficient and reliable services that Aero Contractors is known for, which is the hallmark of Aero Contractors Company Nigeria Ltd,” it said.
The management said in the statement that the past few months had been challenging for the aviation industry and the airline operators in particular.
It said that the challenges include; high cost of maintenance, skyrocketing fuel prices, inflation and forex scarcity resulting in high foreign exchange rates.
It noted that the management was working assiduously to return to service as quickly as possible.
The statement assured the esteemed customers and stakeholders of management’s determination, saying that that its short absence would not create any major void in the market.
”We are coordinating with our business partners to ensure minimum discomfort to ticket holders.
“As members of Spring Alliance (a commercial alliance with member airlines providing mutual support in the area of operations), we are liaising with our partner airlines to minimise the impact on our esteemed customers.
”Our customer service team will be working to help affected esteemed customers reach their destinations, ” the management said.
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The announcement is coming a month after the airline operators at a public forum stated that three of their members might cease operations.
Their reasons include unavailable and high prices of Jet-A1, amongst other challenges airlines have had to face this year alone.