Ethiopian Airlines has opened condolence registers for Nigerians to commiserate with Ambassador Abiodun Bashau and Professor Pius Adesanmi, who were aboard the Boeing 737 Max–8 that crashed on Sunday.
The registers were opened on Tuesday at the Lagos, Abuja, Enugu and Kano airports.
Speaking in Lagos, Mrs. Firihiewot Mekonnen, General Manager of Ethiopian Airlines in Nigeria, thanked Nigerians for standing by the organisation, especially in this moment of grief.
Adesanmi and Bashau was among 157 people flying from Addis Ababa to Nairobi, Kenya. None of those onboard the flight survived the incident.
The plane crashed just six minutes after take off at the airport after losing connection with control room.
Since the crash, which is the second in months involving the same kind of aircraft, the Boeing 737 Max has been grounded in 11 countries.
Ethiopian Airlines is yet to begin flying the B737 Max-8 on Nigerian routes. The B777, B787 Dreamliner and the Airbus A350 are the aircraft deployed daily to Nigeria.
She said: “We thank the Nigerian President and the good people of Nigeria for the condolence message from the Government of Nigeria.
“We have always counted on Nigeria as an African partner and brother and this sad occasion once again proves the bond. We commiserate with Nigeria over the loss to humanity of the two great Nigerians on that flight. We have since reached out to the families involved. Ethiopian Airlines will not abandon its responsibilities to them.”
The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has also assured passengers of their safety.
He reiterated that the country does not have the Boeing 737 Max in its fleet, while stating that the organization would continue to uphold the quality assurance of all planes.
Sam Adurogboye, NCAA spokesperson, said: “This is to assure the public that NCAA will continue to ensure that safety regulations are strictly adhered to for the safety of all in Nigeria. Our heart is with the airline and families of the victims of the accident.
“Presently, the accident aircraft type, Boeing 737 Max-8, is not in operation in the country. However, the authority, in line with its Safety Oversight mandate enshrined in the Civil Aviation Act 2006, is consciously monitoring the development(s) with a view to taking the necessary steps that will enhance the safety of all aircraft in operation within the Nigerian airspace.”
Labour reacts to CBN ban on forex sale to importers
NAN reports that Aremu, also a National Executive Council member of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), gave the commendation in llorin on Thursday.
The CBN had in its meeting with stakeholders in the Cotton, Textile, and Garment value chain on March 5, listed all forms of textile materials among items prohibited from foreign exchange in the official windows.
The CBN also promised financial intervention to textile manufacturers at “single digits rate, to refit, retool and upgrade their factories to enable them produce high quality textile materials for the local and export market.”
Aremu, also the Labour Party governorship candidate in Kwara in the March 9 elections, said the action of the CBN would promote growth of the textiles industries in Nigeria.
He observed that smuggling and wholesale importation of textiles had contributed to the closure of many textile industries in the country.
Aremu equated smuggling to “economic terrorism”, adding that the new initiative of the CBN governor would boost local production, create jobs and lessen pressure on forex if fully implemented.
According to him, CBN will make life difficult for smugglers and warned forex dealers in the country to desist from granting any importer of textile material access to foreign currency in the foreign exchange market.
Details of Zedcrest Capital MD’s case with EFCC emerge
Edenya had allegedly delivered forged letters purportedly originating from the EFCC’s Special Control Unit against Money Laundering, SCUML, to both Access Bank Plc and Coronation Merchant Bank Plc on Friday, August 15, 2018, requesting the account opening package and statement of account of one Rotimi Williams Monye as well as that of his company, Giltedege Partners and Advisory Services Limited.
Edenya, in his statement to the EFCC, stated that the letters were given to him by the second suspect, Amzat, to deliver on behalf of the Commission to the banks.
He further confessed that he posed as an employee of the Commission when he carried out the alleged criminal act at the respective bank.
However, Amzat denied any knowledge of the said letters and investigations are ongoing.
Meanwhile, a source insisted that Edenya, former staff, should face the music for his alleged action if found culpable
“Due to data protection regulations, the banks checked with the EFCC to confirm the authenticity of the letter and found it to be a forged one. The commission thereafter tried to contact Edenya since last year and was unable to reach him”, he said.
“In fact, the commission reached out to Zedcrest Capital severally, as his previous employers, to assist with the investigation and were also unable to contact him until Monday, 11 March 2019 when he was apprehended.
“In his statement to the EFCC, Edenya claimed that he was given the letter by Amzat to deliver to the banks but this has been disputed by the MD especially as Giltedege Partners and Advisory Services is a partner organization.
“The EFCC has been unable to find any evidence confirming that the MD sanctioned the letter and Zedcrest lawyers are working with the commission to resolve the case”.
Nigerian government bans Boeing 737 max airplanes
Hadi Sirika, Minister of Sate, Aviation, disclosed this to state house correspondents at the end of the federal executive council (FEC) meeting, presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari.
Sirika said, “Regarding Boeing 737 Max 8 and Max 9, that has been in the news recently, there is no cause for alarm as there is no operator in Nigeria that is using that type of airplane.
“Regardless of the enormous safety records of this plane 737, it has caused concern in the world of aviation and you know aviation is universal, whatever affects one affects the other because aircraft will be flying in and out.
“So, we have issued directive that no operator with Boeing 737 Max 8 or Max 9 should operate into and outside our airports and this is being carried out.”
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