Allen Onyema, Air Peace, Xenophobia
Allen Onyema

By Chidiebere Nwobodo

Greatness is a repeated recycles of excellence. If it can be conceived, it can be achieved. In the spectrum of life, the bridge between one end of an idea and the other end of accomplishment, is sheer resilience epitomized in eagle-eyed vision and laced with grace.

Air Peace Airline under the leadership of Chief Allen Onyema, has increasingly, demonstrated these unparalleled attributes amidst strangulating operating environment, with an avid appetite to succeed against all odds.

When this Airline debuted in Nigeria’s aviation industry, few years ago, some Nigerians received the news with mixed feelings—not because of anything associated with Air Peace, but as a result of repeated failures witnessed in the industry in the past. Many of the airlines that graced the limelight with pomp and circumstance as “promising” airlines, exited abysmally even before the euphoria of their launching could die.

The import of serial failings of indigenous airlines over the years, meant that some Nigerians developed pessimism towards the possibility of having a reliable airline that would not fail like others. This mental fatigue occasioned by disappointment created by several defunct airlines, was almost metamorphosing into a stronghold until Air Peace Airline entered the fray and stemmed the tide. Chief Allen Onyema, with fear of joining the bandwagon of failed airlines and faith of succeeding—all raging in his mind like centrifugal forces and centripetal forces, determined to make a difference.

Chief Onyema and group of technocrats in the Air Peace went to drawing board to ascertain why indigenous airlines failed repeatedly in the past to cross a certain threshold in the aviation industry. They discovered that, some of the defunct airlines did not have medium and long term goals of increasing their fleet of aircraft, lack of maintenance culture and purposeless leadership, coupled with near-zero easy-of-doing-business in the sector. These are some of the factors that hindered growth of most indigenous airlines in the past.

After the diagnosis cum prognosis on why Nigerian airlines fail easily vis-a-vis the way forward, Air Peace Airline drafted ambitious fleet expansion as part of its core vision. While aviation regulations stipulated not less than three aircraft as part of the requirements for floating an airline, Air Peace hit the ground running with seven aircraft at inception. Since then, it has expanded its fleet to more than twenty-five airplanes—with three jumbo-sized jets as part of the fleet. The hunger to grow in size and might keep getting intensified.

In 2019, the Airline firm-ordered thirteen E195-E2 jets from Brazilian aerospace conglomerate, Embraer. Three of these expected brand new planes will arrive Nigeria before the end of this December—few days from now. The remaining ones will be hitting the nation’s airspace anything from first quarter of 2021. E195-E2 aircraft is a narrow-body aeronautic sophistication, with 124-seater arrangements, premium cabin configuration, other exceptional makeup. Air Peace is the first Airline in Africa to add this type of brand of aircraft to its fleet.

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This is a great milestone on the part of Air Peace; that worth to be celebrated by all and sundry because Air Peace, as the biggest indigenous airline, is at present our de-facto national carrier. And any of its successes, automatically translate to that of the country. What this means is that there will be more aircraft—brand new ones for that matter, in the aviation industry to provide top notch quality of services to the teeming mobile public. It will increase the capacity of the Airline to feed its recently launched international routes—including the ones that will be launched soon.

It will ease traffic, especially at this yuletide period that more Nigerians have opted to fly instead of using the road, as a result of insecurity, vehicular accidents and chaotic traffic on the highways. More job opportunities will be created for Nigerians—more pilots and air hostesses will be required. Mostly importantly, Air Peace has skillfully and relentlessly avoided the landmines of overburdened and non-serviced aircraft. Limited number of aircraft has been the bane of indigenous airlines—because with limited jets, airlines will be reluctant to take some of their aircraft due for maintenance abroad. Once few of their jets pack up, that will be the beginning of the end of the airline.

Air Peace’s speed of ascendancy to greater heights, in the last few years, has ignited optimism in the nation’s airspace. Onyema has stated countlessly, that his ultimate goal is to provide world class flight services, create opportunities, and prove that a Nigerian airline can reckon with other aviation leviathans like British Airways; American Airline, Lufthansa, Emirates, KLM, Virgin Atlantic, Ethiopian Airline, etcetera.

He is taking after aviation tycoons like Richard Brandson of Virgin Atlantic, etcetera. What Tim Cook of Apple Inc., Elon Musk of Telsa, etcetera, have done by building these companies into global brands, is exactly what Allen Onyema is working hard to make out of Air Peace Airline via its ambitions fleet expansion as seen in the purchase of thirteen new jets.

Vanguard News Nigeria

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