FirstNation Airlines and one of its pilots have been ordered to pay a fine of N33.5million by the the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA).
In a recent report by SaharaReporters, the NCAA slammed the fine on the airline on Sunday, February 5th, 2017.
It was further reported that the regulatory agency slammed the fine on the pilot and the airline because the affected pilot had flown around the country with an expired medical certificate since November 1, 2016.
The pilot, who flew an Airbus A319 with the registration number 5N-FNE, was found out during the ramp inspection of the aircraft at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport (NAIA), Abuja, by an NCAA safety inspector.
The agency reportedly stated that while the airline was fined N32million, the pilot was ordered to pay a fine of N1.5 million for the infraction.
Both were ordered to pay up within seven days or face grave disciplinary actions.
A statement signed by Mr. Sam Adurogboye, NCAA's spokesman, said immediately the agency discovered the safety infraction, it wrote a Letter of Investigation (LoI) to the airline and the pilot.
According to the statement, FirstNation Airlines feigned ignorance of the regulation prohibiting flying with an expired medical certificate.
“Therefore, the airline has contravened the Regulations by allowing a flight crew member to be rostered to operate a total of 16 nos (sixteen) scheduled flights on November 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 6th, 7th and 8th, 2016.
“These operations were carried out while his medical certificate had expired since on the 1st November 2016, thereby rendering his pilot license subsequently invalid from that date,” the NCAA said.
It explained further that the sanctions imposed was in accordance with IS 1.3.3 (14), while the pilot would suffer similar fate in line with IS 1.3.3(11) (15) (e), in lieu of suspension under IS 1.3.3(11)(15)(a) of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Regulations 2015.