A number of foreign airlines are allegedly planning to resume flights to Lagos, Abuja and Port Harcourt airports despite the ban on international commercial flights by the Federal Government in a bid to halt COVID-19 spread.
Sources revealed to The Punch that some of the international carriers had already scheduled some flights to Nigeria from June, though the Federal Ministry of Aviation declared that such plans would not work until the flight ban was lifted.
Also, the Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria said no foreign or local carrier could take the decision to fly to or within Nigeria if the government had not opened the airspace.
It is understood that Europe’s largest airline, Lufthansa Airlines, had included Abuja and Port Harcourt among its 20 long-haul routes to begin flight operations in June.
The company plans to resume long-haul flights in June from Frankfurt to Abuja, Port Harcourt, Toronto, Mexico City, Tel Aviv, Riyadh, Bahrain, Johannesburg, Dubai and Mumbai, among others.
Also, Punch reports that Virgin Atlantic recently announced that beginning from May 16, services for its summer schedule flights from March 28, 2021, would be on sale, as it had scheduled flights from London Heathrow to the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos.
This comes as the FG on May 6 extended the suspension of both local and international flights by four weeks.
Senior airline officials have however doused the speculation, saying no international flights would be coming into the country with the lockdown in place.