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Dear Reader,

Welcome to the Nigeria page of "Walther-Weltreisen", a German international travel agency maintaining excellent business and private relations with West Africa in general, and Nigeria in particular.

As a result of our close association with the West African travel industry, we have been monitoring developments in this sector right from the time that Nigeria launched an airline of her own. This is what we observe.

NIGERIA AIRWAYS

Nigeria Airways is an airline we remember fondly. Like other companies and corporations early in the "golden seventies", the national carrier was an object of pride and admiration, not only for Nigerians but also for their well-wishers abroad.

Unfortunately, Nigeria Airways ceased to exist in May 2003.

What went wrong during the thirty-odd years of its life?

Shortly before the airline's exit, the then Minister of Aviation deplored that Nigeria Airways staff and her relatives had been using the national carrier's aircraft as if it was their private property. Mis-management and corruption killed Nigeria Airways. Surprisingly, the company survived this disease for almost three decades but in the final stage, it could not recover from it. It is painful, anyway, to see an originally gallant flag carrier disappear from the scene.

NIGERIAN EAGLE

What next? Goverment resolved to launch a new national carrier to be known as "Nigerian Eagle Airlines".

Advisors and consultants were appointed, and South African Airways was supposed to become the Eagle's technical partner.

After a lot of toing and froing, the result was zero, and the project was packed up. Nobody seems to know (or to say) exactly why the Eagle did not take off.

The travelling public does not really want to know what went wrong. Passengers simply want to get on a plane that takes them reliably and punctually from or to Nigeria.

VIRGIN NIGERIA

If there is no "Eagle", what air transportation will Nigeria then offer her citizens? The new "national carrier" of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is to be an airline called "Virgin Nigeria". Many Nigerians already know the "Virgin Atlantic" connections from London to Lagos and Port Harcourt, and may have heard about the legendary British multi-millionaire and business tycoon, Richard Branson, who initiated this enterprise.

Obviously, he has now found his way to the very top of the Nigerian Government. People ask themselves how he managed to do this, and what "Virgin Nigeria" is all about.

PERSONAL OPINION

We believe that it is a shame that Nigeria cannot run an airline without so-called technical partners. It is not partner airlines that Nigeria needs, but technical expertise which simply involves employing experts in the various branches of airline operations, to run the airline on a contract basis for an agreed span of time. Nigeria has all the money it takes to purchase aircraft and equipment, or alternatively, to lease all the aircraft she needs.

Right now, many patriotic Nigerians feel short-changed, seeing that the "Virgin" itself does not own a single aircraft - they are all on lease. What an irony!

ANY OTHER AIRLINES?

Taking a look at the Nigerian sky, what do we see? After saying good-bye to the flying elephant and the self-styled eagle, we are now left with a virgin. Let us watch her growing up.

However, we feel pity for its would-be Nigerian competitors. An airline like A.D.C., for example, which has performed fairly well on Nigerian domestic routes, was promised traffic rights by the Nigerian Government to various places outside Nigeria, including Brussels. A.D.C. are now in the same quandary with other domestic carriers as there is no clearance for them yet.

In the meantime, "Virgin" is going to operate all the lucrative routes.

ABOUT OURSELVES

We believe you can see from the foregoing that we are a travel agency that cares for its Nigerian passengers.

It is our ambition to keep you briefed about current developments objectively but also to present our own personal opinion in the hope that you will share your own views with us.

Meanwhile, please feel free to become our customer. Our travel agency is committed to help all prospective clients to find special-rate tickets on the airlines they prefer. We spare no effort giving you what you expect from a brilliant travel agent: Friendly and efficient service; reasonable fares; comprehensive information on all travel-related matters.

ALL AIRLINES - ALL DESTINATIONS

Nigeria, as you know, has four international airports: Lagos, Port Harcourt, Abuja and Kano.

For our Nigerian passengers, we have wonderful fares to all these destinations, on reputable airlines, such as K.L.M., Iberia, Air France and many others.

Just contact us for details. Please also remember: Our modern Computer Reservation Systems take bookings up to eleven months in advance. If you book your flight early, you stand a better chance to travel at a low-cost rate.

By the way: We arrange air tickets not only to and from Nigeria but to all destinations outside Europe.

We are anxiously awaiting your enquiry by e-mail to hoelscher@walther-weltreisen.de. You may also get in touch with our head office in Bonn by phone (0228-661239) or by fax (0228-661181). Thank you.

Yours sincerely,
Walther-Weltreisen




COPYRIGHT:
Walther-Weltreisen
Horst Hölscher




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