Nigeria’s largest airline, Arik, suspends operations


Nigeria’s largest airline, Arik Air Limited, has announced the suspension of its flight operations, blaming a delay in insurance documentation.

Arik’s Public Relations and Communications Manager, Olabanji Ola, said the airline will resume operations as soon as the problem is resolved.

Reports that Arik had cancelled flights on Tuesday morning and afternoon had fueled speculation that the airline might have become the latest casualty in the financial crisis plaguing Nigeria’s aviation sector.

But Mr. Ola said the delay in “approval of documentation” was caused by the Sallah public holiday which was followed a “long weekend”.

“At the present time, all flights of the airline have been cancelled for Tuesday, 13 September, 2016 and the airline has stated that it would be getting in touch with passengers to provide an update on rescheduling of their flights,” Mr. Ola said. “This situation is likely to continue for the next few days until such time that NAICOM (National Insurance Commission) approves a waiver on a priority basis for the new insurance company to renew the policy.”

Mr. Ola said passengers had been notified of the development via text messages but customers in need of information could contact Arik through its customer care lines or visit its website.

The statement was silent on compensation, but Mr. Olabanji told PREMIUM TIMES by telephone that the airline was taking care of all concerns arising from the crisis.

“We’re addressing all issues relating to the disruption,” Mr. Olabanji said. “But I am not going to get into specifics about compensation at this point.”

On Tuesday , thousands of passengers were left stranded across the country as the Sallah holidays came to an end. It means many workers may be unable to resume duties on Wednesday.

The development came two weeks after two other national carriers, Aero Contractors and FirstNation, suspended operations on August 31 and September 1, respectively.

While Aero blamed a difficult business environment for its decision to close down and send staff on indefinite leave, FirstNation said it wanted engineers to carry out a routine maintenance of its fleet.

Nigeria’s economic crisis had seen operational costs — including the prices of aviation fuel— skyrocket in recent months, forcing some international airlines to source fuel and engine parts from other West African countries.

Local and international flights operators have increased the prices of their tickets.

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  • Rommel

    Let all businesses established with laundered money collapse I don’t care, I find it difficult to understand why Arik offers very poor services to Nigerians yet are very arrogant to customers who complain,something must be wrong somewhere

    • utolason

      Exactly my thought. Many are not genuine businesses but run as a cover for taking looted funds abroad.

      • Gabriel Olasebikan

        GEJ owns Arik……..

    • the truth

      You are really selfish. Do you know how many fathers and mothers who are directly or indirectly employed by Arik will go home today jobless and without an avenue to feed there kids. In your world since u are nnot directly affected its all good.

      • Du Covenant

        I think you missed the point, it is ‘laundered money’ @Rommel is referring to. Using laundered money to open businesses is not the way to built a prosperous country. We need genuine businesses that can stand the test of time what come may!. Nigeria is full of useless businessmen who careless about the country they operate in or the people they hire to run their criminal empires. This is why we have never made any progress!. There must be discipline, strong institutions and regulations that everyone MUST adhere to regardless of how tall and mighty you are!. Give me one country that has allowed its economy to be a washing machine for ‘dirty money’ and has prospered?.

        • the truth

          and name one large company in nigeria that was established free and devoid of corrupt or laundered money. Name one large company in nigeria that its foundations and founders don’t have one question or the other to answer?

          • Du Covenant

            You just confirmed what I said above. Because everything we do is so fraudulent nothing in Nigeria stands proper scrutiny!. It is wrong for the whole country to be like this, we must say no to such attitude in the strongest terms!.

    • thusspokez

      Let all businesses established with laundered money collapse I don’t care

      You don’t care that thousands of their Nigerian staff and suppliers will be unemployed. Who will provide food and shelter for their families and them? Of course, you don’t care!

      • Rommel

        Only a lunatic will be putting up structures on quicksand so I would not care that you are employed in a money laundry outfit in the name of employment

        • thusspokez

          If you have a job at all (say) in the private sector, do you know the sources of the company investors’ funds?

          • Rommel

            I gave reasons why I hold the view I hold especially with companies like Arik who do not care about the wellbeing of their customers,but it is obvious that you disciples of Jonathan Goodluck are the beneficiaries of the high corruption that characterized that maladministration and you do not care what the impacts has been on Nigerians of your greed and wickedness,perhaps,the man failed because of the insatiable quest for public funds by people like you or share same ideology with you.All over the world companies that were established as fronts for money laundry always end up same way,we had them,Albarka airlines,Okada airlines,Oriental airlines etc

          • thusspokez

            “you disciples of Jonathan Goodluck”, stµpid!

    • AlBsure23

      You are sick. Really sick.

    • John A

      You don’t care? because you live in the western world doesn’t makes you wish you fellow country men evil.
      You need urgent help.

    • Jamiu Hafes

      Eat your cake and still expect to have it?

      Wake up sir!
      Its primary school arithmetic.

      A parallel situation happened in the UK
      For a while, it was relatively easy to obtain loans in the UK banks.

      Of course, unlike Ngeria, people were encouraged to buy properties on loan (mortgaet) that they could not afford the repayment.
      Soon, the whole thing collapsed.
      Now everybody is in trouble.
      Greece and Portugal are other living examples.

      The Greek are complaining as much as we are here in Nigeria.
      The major difference is that the money was not blatantly looted like we did

  • thusspokez

    Another bite the dust with thousands of Nigerians to join the long unemployment queue. But blame not the fantastically incompetent President Buhari, but the GEJ Administration!

  • the truth

    Another set of bread winners going home today without no avenue to feed there kids. Thousands of employees will have a halt to their jobs because of this govt’s draconian policies. Expect APC Zombies to say this is a good move.

  • Truth Justice Equity

    This is yet another tragic shot directly at the soul of this nation,by the time buhari finish with Nigeria, Nigeria shall be like a nation hit by tsunami, earthquake, Ebola and hurricane merged together. God is not an almajiri,and he can never be one.God will intervene when buhari turn away from his negative ,biased,discriminatory, deceitful and hate overwhelmed body language and decides to rule Nigeria in the fear God.
    There had been no evil and misfortune that Nigeria have not suffered since the coming of pmb to power,it is likely that this man has an evil spell and very bad and negative aura.I have been here for a very long time ,but never in the history of Nigeria have our nation and people become so humiliated,traumatized, suffered hardship ,pain,sorrow and death as within buharis 15 months as civilian President of Nigeria. This a classical example of a nation mourning when the wicked is on the throne .never in the history of Nigeria have our naira ever exchanged at 420 to a US dollar,never in the history of Nigeria have Nigerian citizens being murdered by an army of conquest like Fulani herdsmen, never in the history of Nigeria have Nigerian citizens starving to death as in a war time, never in the history of Nigeria have Nigerian citizens become so hopelessly perplexed and badly cast down as today without hope or succour from anywhere.Never in the history of Nigeria have Nigeria experienced this kind of economic shut down as a result of blind leadership. Truly our nation is passing through great tribulations and only divine intervention can save Nigeria from being completely cast down.buhari is a curse on Nigeria, may shame ,distress, pain and sorrow be the portion of all those who used false promises and electoral fraud ,hate and wicked manipulations to impose this sorrow,pain and death on Nigeria. May they and their generations bear the recompense of their wickedness against the people and the nation of Nigeria. may God hastily come to our help before it is too late for Nigeria.amen

    • Alams

      So, Buhari asked the treasury to be looted?

      If there is no money left to waste whose fault is that – wasters or the new government?

      In pateice Jonathan’s account is still a balance of twenty million dollars cash after sepnding so much to build all sorts including the hotel in Yenagoa!

      So, its Buhari’s fault that the money that should have been spent on civil servants’ salaries are in the bank account of Jonathan’s wife and co?

      Please wake up

      It’s no longer business as usual.

      Government should hurry up and seize all those assets and convert them all to make good money for Nigerians.

      • Truth Justice Equity

        My bro ,education is supposed to give a mind of understanding, reasoning abilities and intellectual capacities to those that go through it,my worry had been that some folks were given a bankrupt form of education that made even their professors to acquire the minds of imbeciles.
        Otherwise, how could a generation became so daft to the point where they have turned themselves to zombies and dummies without minds of their own.
        Buhari is now 16 months on the saddle and have traveled to more than 30 countries in pursuit of the so called looted funds,and have unleashed EFCC and DSS to chase shadows,and after 16months of bizarre malicious somersaults, all that buhari have to show for his sponsored media, erats and sai barbarians heartless blackmails of Jonathan was the said recovery of 78 billion naira according to liar Mohammed.
        Now ask yourself if 78billion recovery is enough to repay the harm done to Nigerian nation,Nigerian economy led into bankruptcy by buharis fixation on malicious somersaults against Jonathan and character assassination of Nigerian nation by buhari in his bid to prove that only him is a saint in the midst of his country men and women he branded thieves,corrupt and …… is no longer business as usual ,yet some big guys have turned forex into an ocean of corruption by sitting in their farms and making billions just by calling buharis men of integrity in CBN .it is not business as usual yet burutai,dambazau ,Hamid Ali ,firs man,immigration man etc are still walking free on the streets and sitting with buhari on the table of integrity. It is not business as usual ,yet police are still taking bribes in the open on the highways. It is not business as usual yet everything about Nigeria have collapsed just within 15months of buhaebolas maladministration. Guy wake up this guys are deluding you will looting your nation dry.
        Just accept the fact that buhari is a terrible error of judgment for Nigerian nation.

        • Softly

          For someone talking about other’s lack of education, you singularly don’t project any form of it. Witness your utterly rubbish passage. Ambiguous paragraphs, inappropriate and misplaced punctuation, orphaned sentences, disjointed and meaningless lines. Not to talk of the manifest incoherence and revisionists storytelling of the entire passage. Don’t ever accuse other people of something you so obviously and abundantly lack.

          Gosh! Nigeria is being overrun by halfwits.

          • Truth Justice Equity

            I have never at any time said or boasted that I had the kind of education that you guys claimed that you posses. if I tell you my level of education, you are going to give me a thumb up for my efforts .my challenge had been that you and your bewitched generations who claimed that they are well educated ,who ought to be a shining and leading lights to those of us ,are indeed worst than we that are not educated.
            Just look at our nation where your good education have landed us ,no single Nigerian except you guys that are paid to come on air to mock Nigerians ,is happy today.if you who did not see civil war,who had all the federal government and its bureaucracy under control since ages ,had billions invested by federal government in your education system ,could be so bankrupt in your minds ,souls and mentalities, it means that something is terribly wrong.

          • Softly

            You appear to know an awful lot about me. Where have we met before? From all that you have said about me, we must be very old and intimate friends who know each other very well. Where have we met?

      • walter enang

        You are a daft.!

  • Odus

    it’s about time!!!

  • Seyido

    Putting aside all sentiments related to politics, job losses and or corruption. This is a badly managed company.
    Have you heard of an airline in the world not flying because they couldn’t get their documents right?

    • Rolando

      Arik Air owes fuel suppliers alone 3 Billion Naira!
      How did they manage?

  • Dam Dam

    But Sallah was on monday…which long weekend? they didnt know their insurance was running out? Nigerian companies and incompetencies

  • Oluola

    Did they just realize insurance was to be renewed? Hmmmmmm!! What an excuse? One of the casualties of Buhari economics!
    @United left
    @The Nation parked up
    @Aero parked up
    @arik now joined

    Sai Buhari!

    • Seyido

      What does your ineptitude in not perfecting your documents have to do with Buhari?

      • walter enang

        The illiterate president is I charge of Nigeria right now,that’s what,!