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Jet A-1 Hike: FCCPC urges Nigerian airlines to reconsider proposed shutdown, effects on travellers

Some Nigerian Airlines

*The Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission says the regulatory Commission is in discussion with the leadership of major fuel marketers to understand the global supply challenges and take possible steps to ameliorate same

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

Sequel to the earlier its earlier announcement to shut down operations in the West African country Monday, May 9, 2022, the Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) has said it is aware of a public service announcement by Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON) regarding the impracticality of continuing operations beyond the date, under the prevailing circumstances of high and rising cost of Jet fuel A-1.

ConsumerConnect reports the regulatory Commission, in a statement Mr. Babatunde Irukera, Executive Vice-Chairman/Chief Executive Officer (EVC/CEO) of FCCPC, signed and issued Saturday, May 7, 2022, said it “encourages and implores  domestic airlines to consider the effect of the proposed shutdown on passengers and the magnitude of difficulties and hardship associated with such an action.”

Irukera noted that that the Commission does not trivialise the disruption and potential challenge to business continuity and survivability an inordinately high cost of jet fuel presents to domestic aviation, especially coupled with other rising cost of operations and foreign exchange.

He stated: “Indeed, the Commission has been in discussion with the leadership of major fuel marketers to understand the global supply challenges and possible steps to ameliorate same.

“Accordingly, the Commission strongly advocates engagement among all stakeholders across the value chain to mitigate the current constraints and develop an acceptable interim arrangement to address problems and costs associated with global supply constraints on account of a war, sanctions associated with the war, and a fragile ongoing post pandemic recovery in aviation.”

The FCCPC EVC/CEO, however, noted that the regulator was concerned with rising consumer feedback, that airlines have continued to sell tickets beyond the date announced for the proposed service shutdown of operations in the country.

“To the extent that this is accurate, and the airlines have decided and are resolute, it will be egregious exploitation of consumers and a violation of law to purport to sell a service that the service provider knows, it will not, or does not intend to provide or deliver.

“It is misleading and deceptive under S.123 of the FCCPA to represent a service will be delivered on a certain date when the provider knows the same is false or improbable,” the statement further said.

Irukera as well stated the FCCPC is optimistic that airline operators will not deliberately sell “tickets for flights they do not intend to operate, and is as such hopeful that a solution short of a shutdown will emerge accordingly.”

The Commission continues to monitor this sensitive and evolving situation and remains committed to supporting engagements to provide solutions and stability, said he.

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