NCAA, NAMA, Others Kick against Consumer Protection Law

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Muhtar Usman
Director General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Captain Muhtar Usman

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) and other stakeholders in the aviation industry have kicked against the new Federal Competition and Consumers Protection Act (FCCPA) 2019.
They said the new law was excessively dominant on regulatory bodies.

The agencies alongside other stakeholders registered their displeasure over the law at the Stark Illuminate 1.0 forum Breakfast Knowledge Series, organised by Stark Legal and Barristers in Lagos recently.

The stakeholders excoriated the enacting of the law and said they had no idea of its existence.
The officials who represented the agencies included the Legal Adviser and Head Compliance and Enforcement NCAA, Mr. Emmanuel Chukwuma; Company Secretary, NAMA, Paul Oki; President, National Association of Nigeria Travel Agency, (NANTA), Bankole Bernard

The NCAA official, Chukwuma said, “We were not aware of this law. We didn’t hear of any debate or signing of any bill into law by the President. From our perspective, we believe that we are in a very good position to address airline services’ companies.”

He, however, described the new Act as a “legislative stamp” on the activities of the Consumer Protection Council (CPC), which he said posed danger to the aviation industry.

The legal adviser also said, “The NCAA was established by the Act of Parliament in 2006, with Part 19 of Nigerian Civil Aviation Regulations 2015 providing for consumer protection.”

Chukwuma added that the consumer protection conflict between NCAA and the CPC began in 2013 in a case involving Aero Contractor’s cancelled flight, where CPC intervened and charged the airlines to pay N24 million.

“It showed their understanding of the industry but at that pace, no airline will survive in Nigeria. The new law is a legislative stamp on the activities of CPC. The President has signed it and it our law, but the implications are going to be very huge,” Chukwuma said.

Chukwuma, further said the extra-territorial application of the FCCPA, even to operations outside Nigeria, contravenes Article six of the Chicago Convention and a section of the BASA agreement that made the relevant law as that applicable in the territory of operation.