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Okada Airlines Boeing 747-100 Registration No 5N-EDO. Picture credits airliners.net

Blast from the Past: Okada Air, once a giant in the Nigerian skies

Nigerianflightdeck.com went digging into the archives and guess what we dug up? Okada Air was an airline based in Benin City, Nigeria. The carrier was established in 1983 with a fleet of BAC-One Eleven 300s and started charter operations in September the same year.

Okada Air BAC 111 One-Eleven with registrtion 5N-AXT
Okada Air BAC 111 One-Eleven with registrtion 5N-AXT
Okada Air Boeing 707-300 with Registration number 5N-AOQ
Okada Air Boeing 707-300 with Registration number 5N-AOQ
Okada Air Boeing 727-200 (C-22) with registrtion number 5N-GBA
Okada Air Boeing 727-200 (C-22) with registrtion number 5N-GBA

The owner of Okada Air was Chief Gabriel Igbinedion, the Esama of Benin. In 1984, a Boeing 707-355C was acquired for cargo operations. By 1990, ten BAC One-Elevens were bought, and eight more were acquired in 1991. The company was granted the right of operating international flights in 1992. In 1997 however, the company was went under. It tried to return but  at the time of its comeback, Federal government, after an air crash had banned aircraft BAC 1-11 and for an airline that had almost 20 BAC 1-11 during the time of that policy, well lets just say there was no coming out from that particular policy.

Okada Air operated 2 – BAC 1-11-217EA, 1 – BAC 1-11-301AG, 2 – BAC 1-11-304AX, 2 – BAC 1-11-320AZ, 1 – BAC 1-11-401AK, 1 – BAC 1-11-402AP,1 – BAC 1-11-408EF, 1 – BAC 1-11-409AI, 2 – BAC 1-11-416EK, , 2 – BAC 1-11-420EL, 1 – BAC 1-11-424EU, 2 – BAC 1-11-432FD, 1 – BAC 1-11-524FF, 1 – BAC 1-11-539GL, 1 – Boeing 727-228, 4 – Boeing 727-230, 1 – Boeing 727-251, 1 – Boeing 707-355C, 1 – Boeing 707-365C, 1 – Boeing 747-128, 1 – Boeing 747-146, 1 – Douglas DC-8-62. 1 – Sud SE-210 Caravelle VI-N, 1 – Dornier Do 228-100

In June 1991: A BAC One-Eleven 402AP, registration 5N-AOW, force-landed 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) off Sokoto Airport due to fuel exhaustion. There were three fatalities, all of them passengers. The aircraft had been diverted from the original Benin City–Kano route because of bad weather at the airport of destination.

7 September 1989: A BAC One-Eleven 320AZ, registration 5N-AOT, that was finalising a domestic scheduled Lagos–Port Harcourt passenger service, was written off on a hard landing caused by bad weather at Port Harcourt Airport.

1992: A Dornier 228-100, registration 5N-NOR, resulted damaged beyond repair on landing at an unknown location in Nigeria.

About anthony omoh

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I am a Journalist with a passion for developmental stories and nigerianflightdeck.com was born out of passion for reporting the travel, business and aviation sub-sector. This site is an expression of my ideals and creativity as a reporter and my discretion as a publisher. I am extremely content doing this and I am sure when you read my stories you’d understand that I touch people and that’s why

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