FRIDAY- 10th December, 2021: The federal government has reduced Emirates Airlines’ flight operations to Abuja airport from daily to once per week.
The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) in a letter dated December 9 and addressed to the country manager, Emirates Airlines, Nigeria, said that the new schedule becomes effective on Sunday, December 12, 2021.
The letter was signed by Musa Nuhu, NCAA director-general.
“I wish to inform you of the withdrawal of the approval granted to Emirates Airlines Winter Schedule. This approval was conveyed via a letter with reference number FMA/ATMD/501/C.104/XV/536 dated December 1, 2021,” the statement reads.
“This withdrawal becomes effective on Sunday, December 12, 2021, at 2300h. Please kindly note, henceforth, Emirates Airlines is granted approval to operate only one weekly passenger frequency to Abuja on Thursdays.
“Please be guided accordingly. Do accept the assurances of my highest regards.”
Emirates is the largest airline and one of two flag carriers of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) — the other is Etihad Airways.
Last Sunday, Emirates resumed flight operations to Nigeria after almost ten months of diplomatic discussions around COVID-19 travel requirements for Nigerian passengers.
In February, the airline had instructed Nigerian travellers at the Lagos and Abuja airports to take another PCR test on arrival at Dubai — the directive led to a ban on Emirates flights in Nigeria.
The decision was later reversed when the airline agreed to stop the rapid antigen tests.
In a twist in March, the federal government reintroduced the ban, explaining that Emirates had continued to conduct tests for passengers before departure and at arrival in Dubai.