Nigerian airline, Air Peace has been denied landing permit by British authorities for the planned evacuation of Nigerians stranded in the UK amid the Coronavirus pandemic.
The evacuation flight which was earlier scheduled to depart London Heathrow airport on Monday is now billed for Gatwick airport on Tuesday.
The news was disclosed by the Spokesman, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ferdinand Nwonye, in a statement in Abuja on Sunday, saying a UK airline, Air Partner will now operate the flight.
The statement read,
“It is pertinent to note that Air Peace gracefully contracted Air Partner to operate these charter flights on its behalf at a much higher cost than the ticket fares paid by the prospective evacuees.
“In the light of the foregoing, the Federal Government wishes to extend its appreciation to the chairman and management of Air Peace Limited for their commitments and patriotism in ensuring that our stranded nationals in the United Kingdom return home safely.”The refusal to grant Air Peace landing rights is coming against the backdrop of the evacuation of about 2,000 British nationals from Nigeria by British Airways after receiving special landing rights from the FG.