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Nigeria suspends airline company's operation over plane crash: minister


08:36, June 06, 2012

LAGOS, June 5 (Xinhua) -- The Nigeria government on Tuesday suspended the operations of DANA Airline whose aircraft carrying 153 persons crashed into a two-storey building in southwestern Lagos State on Sunday.

Minister of aviation Stella Oduah told reporters that the airline has been suspended indefinitely for operational safety reasons, pending the outcome of investigations into the plane crash which resulted in the death of about 193 persons including foreign nationals.

Owners of the commercial plane said earlier Tuesday that the airline company would do everything possible to assist families who lost dear ones in the air mishap. In a statement made available to Xinhua, the airline regretted the accident and expressed deepest sympathies to the families and friends of the deceased, adding that a 24-hour call center service has been initiated alongside an information center set up at the Murtala Muhammed Airport in Lagos to look after their needs and keep them as quickly informed as possible.

"An investigation into the cause of the accident got underway immediately (after the air crash), under the guidance of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), who is being assisted by investigators from the U.S. National Safety Transportation Board (NTSB). Dana Air is cooperating fully and assisting the investigation in every possible way," the airline company said.

Meanwhile, the Nigerian Senate has recommended that the director general of Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Harold Demuren be asked to step aside.

The recommendation came during preliminary deliberations on the plane crash on the floor of the upper chamber of the Nigerian legislature on Tuesday.

The aircraft had crashed in a residential area in SouthWest Nigeria's Lagos State, killing all 153 passengers and crew on board alongside some residents of a two-storey building.


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