Executive Secretary, Nigerian Christian Pilgrims Commission, NCPC, Mr. John Kennedy Opara has said the activation of the Bilateral Air Services Agreement, BASA, will deepen bilateral ties between Nigeria and Israel, as well as ensure direct and smooth flights to the Holy Land.
Opara, while speaking during the signing of Air Charter Agreement for the 2015 Pilgrimage exercise in Abuja yesterday, assured that, before the commencement of the airlift of pilgrims this year, the BASA with Israel which was signed in October, 2013 would be activated to ease the journey for intending pilgrims.
He noted that there has not been any form of air mishap in the last seven years of NCPC/Atlastjet air operations to the Holy Land, a feat he attributed to strict observance of standards in tandem with international best practices.
According to him, the air charter agreement between the Commission and the two airlines, Atlasjet Nigeria Limited and Airfirst Nigeria Limited was in line with the Federal Government’s approval for this year’s pilgrimage.
“The signing of the air charter agreement is not an end in itself, but a process that must be completed. We expect the two airlines to provide the best services that will ensure the comfort of all intending pilgrims.
From air flight to accommodation and feeding, we expect nothing short of the best. As you are aware, President Muhammadu Buhari is a man of integrity and strong character who does not tolerate incompetence, failure and cutting corners,” he stressed.
Opara urged airline providers to maintain high standards and keep to specifications.