Nigeria Reopen Skies, KLM AirFrance Among Airlines Barred In The Country

Nigeria Reopen Skies, KLM Airfrance Among Airlines Barred In The Country

The Federal Government of Nigeria barred several international flights as the country opened up its skies on Saturday 5 September.

Speaking on Thursday during a briefing of the Presidential Taskforce on COVID-19 at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja, the Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, listed the airlines not permitted to operate in Nigeria.

The airlines include Air France, KLM Royal Dutch, Lufthansa, Etihad Airways, Angolan TAG, Air Namibia, RwandAir and Royal Air Maroc among others.

Mr Sirika said Air France and KLM Royal Dutch were not approved because Nigerians with tourist visas are not allowed entry into France and Netherlands. 

Nigeria had said it would retaliate any entry ban against its citizens. For RwandAir, the minister said that Air Peace is not applicable despite being their carrier in Nigeria. However, he went ahead to thank the airline.

Mr Sirika said that only the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport and the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, would reopen for international travels.

He listed EgyptAir, Virgin Atlantic, Turkish Airlines, AWA, Kenya Airways and Middle East Airlines as airlines permitted to operate into the Lagos airport.

And British Airways, Emirates, Ethiopian, AWA, and Middle East Airlines as airlines allowed to operate into the Abuja airport. Mr Sirika outlined measures to be observed by passengers who plan to travel to Nigeria. 

For those who fail to comply with the COVID -19 protocol put in place to curb the importation of the virus, they would be suspended from travelling for six months while airlines that fail to comply would pay a fine of $3,500 per passenger.

Nigeria suspended international flights in March as part of efforts to curb the spread of coronavirus. In July, however, the Federal Government of Nigeria reopened the domestic flights.