Private jets are being used for money laundering and drug trafficking – Festus Keyamo

The Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development, Festus Keyamo, has alleged that some private aircraft operating in Nigeria are being used for money laundering, drug trafficking and other illegal activities.

Private jets are being used for money laundering and drug trafficking - Festus Keyamo

Keyamo said this at the Ministry of Aviation in Abuja on Thursday, June 27, when he inaugurated a Ministerial Taskforce Committee to checkmate illegal chartered operations in the country. Though the minister did not mention the names of the airlines, he stated that these illegal activities have made the sector lose billions of dollars and raised serious security concerns.

 

The Minister further stated that some of those involved in the illegal activities are those who acquired licenses for non-commercial flights operations but gone against the stipulated agreement of the licenses.

 

Addressing the committee members, Keyamo mandated that they take inventory of all non-commercial flights operators, investigate all professional licenses and checkmate their authencity as well as recommend disciplinary measures against airlines found culpable.

‘’Last week, the National Security Adviser wrote to us, alerting us of the spike in money laundering, drug trafficking and other illegal activities through the use of private aircraft in the country.

 

It appears that Private Non-Commercial Flight (PNCF) operators have become increasingly emboldened, continuing their illegal operations with the assistance of Air Operator Certificate (AOC) holders who collect tolls and list these illegal charters under their AOCs.

 

We have received alarming reports that some crew members have not attended mandatory simulator trainings for nearly three years and are flying with fraudulently-obtained renewed licenses.

 

Many of these individuals are operating planes registered under PNCF but are conducting illegal charter operations with impunity.” he said

 

The eight-man committee was chaired by the Chief Executive Office of Aero Contractors, Ado Sanusi, and the committee is expected to report all findings to the minister within the next three months.

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