Abuja. Nigeria has fined a UK airline $3,300 for illegally running a passenger service into the country during the Covid-19 travel ban.
The Flairjet plane was impounded by Nigeria on May 17, 2020 and the crew interrogated.
The plane had been approved strictly for humanitarian operations but it landed in the West African country with passengers against regulations governing control of Covid-19.
Nigeria’s Aviation Minister Hadi Sirika said on Monday that the plane violated “our Civil Aviation Regulations.”
“We [made] them pay and reported their callous misdemeanour to UK CAA, MFA and the UK High Commission,” he added.
In late March, Nigeria stopped international flights to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease.
Although it has now eased some restrictions, all international flights are still suspended with the exemption of those allowed to repatriate citizens stranded in foreign countries.
Meanwhile, Nigeria has expressed outrage over the refusal by Canada to grant Air Peace landing rights to evacuate Nigerians in the country. Canadian authorities cited safety concerns.
The Nigerian airline was forced to refund fare to 319 passengers who have already booked the flight.