By Chuks Oyema-Aziken
Executive Jets Services Limited, has apologized to the Federal Government saying it was mislead into airlifting musical artiste, Azeez Fashola, popularly known as Naira Marley, to Abuja for a concert on Saturday.
The flight was in violation of the COVID-19 guidelines.
The company’s apology is contained in a letter addressed to the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Siriki.
The Federal Government, on Monday, announced the indefinite suspension of the operator and said it would impose the maximum fine for violating the flight approval it received from the Federal Ministry of Aviation.
In the letter signed by the Chairman/CEO, Dr. Sam Iwuajoku, Executive Jets claimed the flight was to carry a Judge to Abuja on Sunday 14th, 2020 as requested and permit was granted based on the application.
They said the ill-fated trip had name of a Fashola Babatunde on the manifest, giving them the impression that the passenger is the Minister of Works and Housing.
“But unfortunately when I called the Judge on Saturday morning to inform him that we have the permit, he then said that he has reached Abuja already with a different flight that someone gave him a lift to Abuja,” the letter said.
“So on Saturday morning 13 th June, 2020 my staff called me that they have a charter flight to Abuja and that the passengers are already in the lounge as a rule passenger manifest is always sent to me before any departure, when I went through the manifest and I saw FASHOLA BABATUNDE I thought it was the Honorable Minister of Works going to Abuja with his men, so we decided to do the flight since is a serving minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, I didn’t know that it was a bunch of useless people.
“We are very sorry for this mistake and we promise that this would not happen again.
“Kindly see attached Passenger Manifest for the flight.”