The Nigerian College of Aviation Technology (NCAT), Zaria,on Monday said the college is acquiring a total of of 20 new aircraft, five multi-engine DA42 and 15 single-engine DA40 trainers to phase out obsolete trainer aircraft.
Speaking on the occasion of NCAT taking delivery of one aircraft called DA42NG from Interjet Nigeria limited, Earlier, Rector/ Chief Excutive of NCAT, Capt. Abdulsalam Mohammed, noted that 29 trainer aircraft have become old and even too expensive to fuel and maintain, revealing that the latest in the fleet was bought over 15 years ago.
The Rector said:”Honourable Minister, as you already know, there are currently 29 trainer aircraft in the college. These aircraft used for ab-inition training TB 9, Trinidad TB 20 GT and Beech Baron 58 are old, the earliest being purchased 15 years, and quite expensive to fuel and maintain.
“In the light of this, the college initiated moves at refleeting its trainer aircraft. It is thrilling for us that we are gathered today to witness the culmination of that initiative” Mohammed said.
In his address, the Minister of State for Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika,said acquisition of more aircraft as well as refleeting old aircraft was a commendable initiative by the college.
Sirika added that the federal government was committed to the aviation master plan across the country.
The Minister, said: “The federal government is in full support of the refleeting of trainer aircraft at the NCAT, Zaria. The acquisition of more aircraft was a commendable initiative by the institution as well as the refleeting of its old aircraft used for its training”.
“These new trainer aircraft would significantly improve our flight training experience. And from the angle of cost efficiency, our analysis shows they will significantly reduce our operating cost, especially in the area of maintenence and fueling.
“They are also equipped with glass cockpit and garmin 1000, which will make it easier for our graduating pilots to transition to new generation commercial aircraft” Sirika added.
On his part, Chief Executive Officer, Interject Nigeria limited, Mr. Seun Peters, said: “We are formally handing over the first DA42NG Trainer Aircraft built by Diamond Aircraft Industries of Austria to the Nigerian College of Aviation Technology NCAT in fulfillment of the Federal Government’s promise to phase out the old aircrafts used by the college and replace them with 20 (Twenty) brand new modern DA42 and DA40 Aircrafts”