The lingering scarcity of Jet A1, popularly called aviation fuel, on Monday disrupted flight operations at the Murtala Muhammed Airport 2 (MMA2) and the General Aviation Terminal of the airport in Lagos.
Some domestic airlines had to either re-schedule or cancel most of their flights following their inability to procure aviation fuel for their aircrafts.
The affected airlines included Aero Contractors, Dana, Azman, First Nation and Peace Airline.
Some passengers travelling to Abuja, Kano, Kaduna, Owerri, Yola and Enugu were left stranded, following the announcement of the cancellation of their flights.
The situation prompted some of the stranded passengers to rush to Arik Air counter to get fresh tickets as the airline was among the few that were having hitch-free operations.
A passenger, Chioma Akabueze, said she was booked for the 10:00 a.m. flight in one of the affected airlines, but was later informed that all the airline’s flights for the day had been cancelled.
“The announcement was made around 4.30 p.m. and it is very disappointing. I was supposed to hold a meeting with a client in Owerri by 2:00 p.m. and now, I have to reschedule,’’ she said.
Another traveller, Emma Akanni, said he had to pay a tout N40,000 to get him an Arik Air one-way ticket to Abuja, though the airline usually charges N51,600 for a return ticket for the same destination.
The Consumer Protection Department of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) had revealed in its 2016 First Quarter Report that domestic airlines recorded 8,478 cases of delayed flights.
The report said a total number of 15,434 flights were operated by eight domestic airlines during the period under review, while 281 flights were cancelled.
However, the airlines had attributed the situation, which led to over 50 per cent of their flights being delayed or cancelled, to the scarcity of aviation fuel and had appealed to the government to intervene in making the product available.