Azman Disowns Letter that Defamed NCAA DG

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Chinedu Eze

Azman Air has disowned the letter addressed to the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), in which the Director General, Captain Musa Nuhu was accused of unprofessionalism and extortion.

In another letter addressed to the NCAA, the Accountable Manager of Azman Air, Mr. Muhammad Abdulmunaf, said the earlier letter didn’t emanate from its management, stressing that it was a “deliberate falsehood targeted at discrediting the Director General and the airline.”

The NCAA had last week announced the suspension of Azman Air’s operations, citing safety concerns after the airline suffered three serious incidents in six weeks.

Following the announcement, a protest letter purportedly emanating from the airline, accused the NCAA Director General, Nuhu of unprofessionalism and being too hasty in taking the decision suspending the airline.

The NCAA in response issued a statement defending its decision and also addressed allegations that the Director General had benefited financially from the airline.

However, Abdulmunaf in this second letter vehemently denied the earlier one.

“We wish to state categorically that the recent publication making the rounds in the media in which an attack purported to be masterminded by Azman Air in reaction to NCAA’s suspension of its operations was launched on the integrity of the NCAA DG, Captain Musa Nuhu never came from Azman Air.

“We had our request for expatriate pilots turned down but this has nothing to do with the integrity of the DG as a person as other airlines were so treated, hence we have decided to conduct an internal investigation to find out the source of the letter.

“How could we allege extortion against the DG for requesting that we pay for an advert featuring Azman Air in an ICAO magazine when the said payment wasn’t for him but for the publishers? That we didn’t pay as and when due wasn’t a sign of refusal to pay but an innocent oversight on our part.

“How could we have alleged any wrong doing against the DG for carrying out his duties? It is within his core mandate to take the decision he took suspending the operations of our 737s and we are not unaware of the very high premium the agency under him places on safety.

“We are leaving no stone unturned in our resolve to fish out the authors of this falsehood calculated to damage our rating. We wish to state that Azman Air is willing to cooperate fully with its investigations of our operations as safety is our watchword,” Abdulmunaf said.