Chairman of Air Peace, Allen Onyema made this known on Saturday night at a dinner held in honour of the airline’s successful flight into Sharjah, the United Arab Emirates ( UAE) where he looked at the airline’s immediate future.
According to Onyema, the airline has been given permit to commence air services into South Africa but is still in perfecting agreement to partner airlines as it does not intend to be a point to point carrier.
Onyema explained that Air Peace, before August 30th, 2019, will launch flights into Johannesburg but stated that the airline must have signed an agreement with a partner that would take its passengers beyond Johannesburg.
” Before August 30th we will start jo’ burg but we must have signed an agreement with a local carrier that would take our passengers beyond Jo’burg to places like CapeTown, and even beyond to cities like Lesotho and others.”
He also announced that the airline at the same time or in September will commence India, depending on what happens.
” We might be doing Jo’burg and India almost same time or at most in September. The Indians are calling for us and we have already started fulfilling their requirements. Federal Government has also written Indian Government and asked them to give us support.
” So at most second week of September. We are looking forward to discuss with Air India which is key so they can fly our passengers beyond India.
He then said that Air Peace would also be entering China through Guangzhou but decried criticisms he got when he started acquiring aircraft to commence long haul flights stating that some of the critics were downright malicious and mischieveious.
” We are going to Guangzhou in November. When we started acquiring aircraft, we were unjustly criticised without the critics understanding. If you do not have at least three long haul aircraft, or a lease of three aircraft of those specifications the Chinese will not give you the permit”
” Our Ambassador in Beijing gave us all the support and cooperation to make this come to fruition and make it easy for Air Peace but before they give you that permit, you have to show them your aircraft, with its tail sign or its lease documentation. So if AirPeace did not buy those aircraft…”
He however called on government to do what the Americans did and stop unfair competition as it affects local airlines willing to take that step out.
” Government must stop unfair competition if we are to survive. It must end proliferation of routes and handing out multiple designation to foreign carriers. How can an airline fly into almost every Nigerian city, or still fly from Abuja to Port Harcourt to pick passengers, if you want our airlines to survive and sustain jobs it creates you will not give multiple entries to foreign airlines,” he lamented.