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We are working to settle Nigeria, UAE flight row – Speaker

The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon Femi Gbajabiamila, on Tuesday, held a meeting with the Ministers of Aviation, Senator Hadi ...


The Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon Femi Gbajabiamila, on Tuesday, held a meeting with the Ministers of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, Foreign Affairs, Chief Onyema Ugochukwu and his junior over the flight ban between the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and Nigeria.


The meeting which was at the instance of the Speaker lasted for three hours behind close doors at the National Assembly complex in Abuja.


The meeting, the Speaker later told journalists was to find solution to the impasse between Nigeria and the United Arab Emirate which noted was robustly discussed.


He described the diplomatic relationship between Nigeria and the United Arab Emirate as crucial that should not be allowed to collapse.


“The United Arab Emirates has a long standing relationship between Nigeria and it should not be allowed to collapse as both countries stands to benefit much more economically.


Also present at the meeting were representatives of Emirates Airline, the Chairman/CEO of Air Peace, Allen Onyema, and heads of agencies in the aviation sector.


The Speaker explained that steps taken to address the issues and that “in the next couple of days, this matter will be sealed, I believe. We’re engaged in parliamentary diplomacy. That’s what we’re doing.


“We’re not going to allow this to mar the giant strides made between the two countries.”


The Speaker noted that the UAE Government had already written Air Peace to allow the airline to operate seven slots of flights.


He commended the two ministers for their efforts in resolving the issues even as he appreciated Nigerians for their sacrifices and for standing by the Nigerian Government on the face-off.


On his part, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyema, said the meeting under Gbajabiamila’s leadership was a fruitful one, noting that the action pointed to the relevance of Executive-Legislative engagements.


He said they were hopeful that all the issues would be resolved in no distant future.

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