The aviation service company suspended by the Federal Government for flying Azeez Fashola, popularly known as Naira Marley, Executive Jet Services Limited, has said it operated the flight to Abuja based on the false impression it was going with the Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola.
This was made known by the Chief Executive of the company, Sam Iwuajoku, in a letter to the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, on Monday.
Though Iwuajoku admitted that the flight was initially approved to convey a judge to Abuja, but after Justice Adefope Okoji found his way to Abuja with another airline, they got the offer to convey another set of passengers to Abuja, with the name of Fashola sticking out.
He added that the airline was not aware that those they were flying “was a bunch of useless people”.
The letter read: “We hereby apologize for the above flight, with your permit ref: PMA/ATMD/0175/V/V/1268 dated 11th June, 2020.
“Please the flight was to carry a Judge to Abuja on Sunday 14th, 2020 as requested and permit was granted based on the application, but unfortunately when I called the Judge on Saturday morning to inform him that we have the permit, he then said that he has reached Abuja already with a different flight that someone gave him a lift to Abuja.
“So on Saturday morning 13th June, 2020 my staff called me that they have a charter flight to Abuja and that the passengers are already in the lounge as a rule passenger manifest is always sent to me before any departure, when I went through the manifest and I saw FASHOLA BABATUNDE I thought it was the Honorable Minister of Works going to Abuja with his men, so we decided to do the flight since (he) is a serving minister of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, I didn’t know that it was a bunch of useless people.
“We are very sorry for this mistake and we promise that this would not happen again.”
According to available information, those on the flight were: Adewunmi Segun, Chinonso Opara, Fashola Babatunde, Fashola Adeshina, Adeyeye Tobi, Michael Opeyemi, Idowu Emmanuel, Seyi Awonuga, Wisdom Intoto and Abayomi Akin.
Naira Marley on Saturday held a concert in Abuja, which defied the social distancing rule occasioned by the Coronavirus Disease.