Thursday, 21 March 2019

Air Peace CEO Condemns Attacks On His Airline Over Boeing Max 737 Plane Acquisitions

As global reactions rage over the Boeing 737 Max plane which has been involved in accidents twice, the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Air Peace, Mr. Allen Onyema, has said the airline would await the outcome of investigations before making a decision on whether or not to cancel the order made by the airline.

The airline, the largest domestic carrier in Nigeria in terms of fleet size, had made order for the delivery of the 10 B737 Max plane prior to the crash of Lion Air flight 610 in October 2018 in Indonesia and Ethiopian Airline flight 302 in Ethiopia.

Both crashes claimed the lives of 346 people on board.

Speaking on the development on Wednesday, Onyema reiterated that it was true the airline made the order prior to the crashes but the planes have not been delivered.

He cried out that the airline was being unnecessarily attacked for ordering for the planes even though the order has not been received.

Onyema said, “But I still wonder that air accident happened in Ethiopia; Ethiopians have never taken their airline that had accident to the cleaners.

“Ethiopians have never up to this moment attacked Ethiopian Airlines that bought this aircraft.

“South West Airlines has so many of these planes; no country has ever attacked those who innocently purchased these planes and who are already using them.

“We have 400 of these planes in active service, none of these countries where these plane are operating had ever risen up against their airlines for buying these planes. Not even Ethiopia and Indonesia that had accidents with these planes, their citizens never attacked them.

“However, Air Peace that does not have the aircraft has been taken to the cleaners by Nigerians for what didn’t even concern us”.

Onyema noted that all the airlines that ordered for the aircraft, none has cancelled its order as they are all waiting for the investigation and action that would be taken by Boeing.

He said it was a right step that Nigeria, like many other countries of the world, has banned the aircraft in its airspace.

He flayed some Nigerians creating impression that the airline has the equipment in its fleet when the order would only start to arrive in 2023.

He said, “We are not saying we are cancelling, neither are we saying we are not cancelling because no airline that ordered for the aircraft had said it is cancelling. Everybody is waiting for the outcome of the investigation.

“What airlines that have the aircraft have done now is to ground them until the result of the investigation comes out. And at the same time, countries are banning them from flying in their airspace until the investigation comes out.

Onyema stressed that the plane is one of the fastest selling equipment in the world, adding that many other aircraft that were introduced in the past had hitches and these hitches were corrected.

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