Private jet with shadowy figures and money bags

Nigerian Aviation Minister Alleges Private Jets Used for Money Laundering and Drug Trafficking

The Nigerian Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development, Festus Keyamo, has raised serious allegations against private jet operators in the country, accusing them of using their aircraft for money laundering, drug trafficking, and other illegal activities. This revelation has prompted the formation of a Ministerial Taskforce Committee to address these concerns.

Key Takeaways

  • Private jets in Nigeria are allegedly being used for money laundering and drug trafficking.
  • The Minister of Aviation has formed a task force to investigate and curb these illegal activities.
  • The task force has a three-month deadline to present its findings.

Allegations and Concerns

Festus Keyamo, the Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development, has expressed grave concerns over the misuse of private aircraft in Nigeria. According to Keyamo, these illegal activities have not only resulted in significant financial losses but also pose serious security threats. The minister highlighted that some individuals have obtained permits for non-commercial aircraft but have violated the terms of their licenses.

Formation of the Taskforce

In response to these alarming activities, Keyamo announced the formation of an eight-member Ministerial Taskforce Committee. The committee is chaired by Ado Sanusi, CEO of Aero Contractors, and has been given a three-month deadline to present its findings. The task force is charged with several responsibilities, including:

  • Taking inventory of all non-commercial flight operators.
  • Investigating the validity of professional licenses.
  • Recommending appropriate sanctions for airlines involved in illicit activities.

Security and Financial Implications

The minister emphasized that these unlawful activities have cost the aviation industry billions of dollars. Additionally, the National Security Adviser has alerted the ministry about the spike in money laundering and drug trafficking through the use of private aircraft. Keyamo noted that some crew members have not attended mandatory simulator training for nearly three years and are flying with fraudulently-obtained renewed licenses.

Taskforce Members

The task force comprises individuals of high repute and integrity from within the aviation industry. The members include:

  • Capt. Ado Sanusi (Chairman)
  • Capt. Roland Iyayi (Vice Chairman)
  • Director of Air Transport, FMA&AD (Secretary)
  • Theresa A. Babaoye (DATR-NCAA)
  • One Nominee from the National Security Adviser
  • Capt. Daniel Quansah
  • Capt. Patrick Ogunlowo
  • Obafemi Bajomo (SA-HMA)

Objectives and Expectations

The task force aims to restore confidence in Nigeria’s aviation industry by eliminating illegal operations and ensuring that every flight adheres to the highest standards of safety and legality. The committee is expected to work diligently over the next three months, with the possibility of an extension if circumstances require.

Keyamo concluded by urging the task force members to work diligently to restore confidence in the aviation industry, eliminate illegal operations, and ensure that every flight in Nigeria’s skies adheres to the highest standards of safety and legality.


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