Okada Air

Operated from Sep 1983 to Jul 1997

Country of Origin – Nigeria

Founder/Director – Chief Gabriel Igbinedion

While numerous first generation, African registered jets have passed through SEN over the years, primarily for engineering services or refinishing, no other airline from this large continent has made so many visits to SEN with so many different aircraft. Starting out as a pure 1-11 operator in September 1983, Okada Air started off by offering internal charter services before also moving into cargo operations during the late summer of 1984 after the acquisition of larger equipment in the form of a Boeing 707. Finally in 1992, the airline began to operate flights outside of Nigeria and as such, purchased a number of wide-bodied airliners that are obviously beyond the scope of this website. However, by 1997 the company had folded and many of its aircraft were then stored at Benin City Airport with a good number of them still being visible on Google Earth as of 2015.

As far as SEN was concerned, most if not all the Okada aircraft that ventured into the airport would visit either BAF Engineering, Heavylift or Refurbishair with the first visit occurring during May 1989. Indeed, of its 25 aircraft BAC 1-11 fleet, it would derive 7 examples from ex-British Airways and ex-B-Cal stock, these being prepared for delivery at Bournemouth, while a further 14 were purchased from various U.S. and U.K. independents, most of which passed through Southend. Many of these aircraft later left SEN still carrying their U.K. registrations and would only receive their Nigerian designations on reaching Ostend or Palma. All but two of Okada’s Boeing 727 fleet would visit the airport, these having been purchased from Lufthansa stock. Finally, the airline’s Boeing 707 would also put in an appearance during 1993 for attention with Heavylift.

 

Okada fleet from 1989 to 1993

(Only those aircraft that were likely to have visited SEN have been listed)

BAC 1-11

5N-AXQ* – 10/90 to 7/97

WFU & Stored at Benin City, Nigeria

5N-AXT* – 6/90 to 7/97

WFU & Stored at Benin City, Nigeria

5N-AYR* – 10/89 to 7/97

WFU & Stored at Benin City, Nigeria

5N-AYS* – 9/87 to 7/97

WFU & Stored at Benin City, Nigeria

5N-AYT* – 5/87 to 7/97

WFU & Stored at Benin City, Nigeria

5N-AYV* 9/87 to 7/97

WFU & Stored at Benin City, Nigeria

5N-AYU* – 5/87 to 7/97

WFU & Stored at Benin City, Nigeria

5N-AYW* – 10/89 to 7/97

WFU & Stored at Benin City, Nigeria

5N-EHI* – 8/91 to 7/97

WFU & Stored at Benin City, Nigeria

5N-MZE* – 5/91 to 7/97

WFU & Stored at Benin City, Nigeria

5N-OMO* – 5/91 to 7/97

WFU & Stored at Benin City, Nigeria

5N-OVE* – 5/91 to 7/97

WFU & Stored Benin City, Nigeria

5N-SDP* – 1/92 to 7/97

WFU & Stored at Benin City, Nigeria

5N-TOM* – 12/91 to 7/97

NTU re-reg as 5N-NRC – WFU & Stored at Benin City, Nigeria

Boeing 707

5N-AOO – 4/88 to 10/88

Sold to BIAS as OO-CDE

5N-AOQ* – 7/84 to 10/96

Sold to International Air Tours as 5N-VRG

Boeing 727

5N-CMB* – 12/92 to 12/95

Sold to Safair as ZS-NWA

5N-GBA* – 1/93 to 7/97

WFU & Stored Benin City, Nigeria

5N-MML* – 12/92 to 7/97

Sold to Comtran International as N727SA

5N-NEC* – 1/93 to 11/95

Sold to Comair as ZS-NVR

 

Do you have any other, interesting snippets of information about this company’s SEN history or indeed any pictures that you would like to share? If so, then please contact us on saadinfomail@gmail.com

Many thanks from the SAAD Admin Team.