A new Maintenance Repair and Overhaul (MRO) facility, called 7 Star Global Hangar, has been licensed by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), owned and managed by Nigerians.
Chief Executive Officer of the MRO centre, Engr. Isaac Balami said the MRO facility would commence operations next week, adding that the facility is capable of handling the maintenance of Boeing 737 fleets (Boeing Classic along side new generation), private jets military / paramilitary airplanes and other aircraft types.
Speaking with reporters after receiving the news of the grant of the licence, Balami said 7 Star MRO was well stocked with a comprehensive spare parts inventory marketplace to be made available to airlines in Nigeria and across the west and central African region.
Balami, who decried the high cost of maintenance of aircraft by airline operators in the region, said relief had come to the aviation sector, urging operators to take advantage of the opportunity.
According to him, the major factor responsible for the collapse of airlines over the years, had been the capital and fleet erosion, all of which could be mitigated and eliminated with licenced local maintenance support.
Balami, the former president of national association of aircraft pilots and engineers (NAAPE) noted that with his Jordanian, American and European technical partners, his team has the expertise to deliver world class service, adding that they are ready to bring their expertise to bear.
According to the CEO, some of the experts in the organisation have worked for more than 30 years in the aviation sector, at local and international levels.
“Furthermore, our technical partners from Jordan, USA and Europe bring more than 50 years combined so operations in aircraft heavy maintenance, ranging from C-D Checks to aircraft paintings amongst a broad cross section of related services”.
“Together we have resolved to ensure aircraft serviceability across Africa. This MRO will create hundreds of jobs in the next few months as well stimulate opportunities across the sector’s supply chain.”
Maintenance services, Balami disclosed, would also be available in Abuja in a few short weeks from now, delivering cost reduced international class services and would take two Boeing 737 at the same time.
The founding director of 7 Star Global Hanger, an international aviation expert from the US and the former MD of American Airlines where he was in charge of more than a thousand aircraft – and the biggest MRO in the world, Dr Abiodun Asekun, described the approval of the licence by NCAA as a right step in the right direction adding that the MRO would play a major role in support of and close working partnership with the new Nigerian national carrier commencing operations soon.
He added that the 7 Star Global Hanger was currently the only stand alone MRO in west and central Africa with huge potentials.
“Because there is no parking space in the air, we have put together the best brains in the aircraft maintenance, managements, engineering, modifications, fabrications, training, design and manufacturing on ground”, Dr. Asekun said.
The accountable manager of the MRO centre, Engr. Ibrahim Nock said the 7 Star was coming at a time when it was truly needed in the country, stating that the managers of the national carrier fleet are encouraged to take advantage of the facility, to generate jobs for the vast number of talented but unemployed engineers across the country.
”This is also an opportunity to stretch the best aviation engineers at home and across the diaspora – many of whom have made up their minds to return home to support the great efforts of the aviation minister, with the support of our president”.