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Court Adjourns Airline Operators, FG Transfer Motion To Feb 13


January 17, (THEWILL) – The Federal High Court, Ikoyi, Lagos, presided over by the Honourable Justice Ambrose Lewis-Allagoa, has adjourned to February 13, 2023, the hearing on the preliminary request before it, on transferring suit no: FHC/L/CS/2159/22/283, filed by the Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON), to Abuja.

The judge has a timeline of one month for counsel to the plaintiffs to study the request of the Federal Government to have the case transferred to Abuja from Lagos.

The suit instituted by the plaintiffs is requesting the court’s thorough examination of the process to birth a national airline, Nigeria Air and if the modus operandi adopted by the government in establishing the airline, is fair, and whether it would pose a threat to the existing indigenous operators in the Nigeria airspace and threat to the national economy.

At the weekend, however, Defendants, Nigeria Air; Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika and the Attorney General of the Federation, filed a Motion of Notice with backing affidavits, seeking the Federal High Court in Lagos to transfer the suit filed against them on the suspended National carrier to the Federal High Court in Abuja, citing various reasons including costs and jurisdiction.

The motion, which was filed on January 13, 2023, prayed the court for an order, transferring the suit, FHC/L/CS/2159/22/283, to the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja judicial division, for determination, being the judicial division of the court wherein all the Defendants reside and carry on a substantial part of their business.

The Motion also sought for such order or further orders, “as this Honourable Court may deem fit to make in the circumstances of this case.”

The Motion was also supported with affidavits by Counsel to the 1st, 3rd and 4th Defendants.

Determination of the Motion for the Transfer of the case to Abuja will be heard on February 13, 2023.