IRS Airlines (IS, Abuja) plans to resume scheduled operations have been dealt a severe blow following the recent crash landing of one of its five Fokker 100s, 5N-SIK (cn 11286), near GANLA waypoint in neighbouring Niger. The twinjet was on a positioning flight back to Kano from Bratislava where it had undergone a C-Check.

According to The Aviation Herald, the overhaul came after problems with the aircraft's hydraulics in 2013 prompted the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) to ground the airline's operations.

Nigerian law calls for a scheduled passenger airlines to operate at least three serviceable aircraft.

According to the ch-aviation aircraft database, three other IRS Fokker 100s - 5N-CEO (cn 11295), 5N-HIR (cn 11498), and 5N-SAT (cn 11293) - are currently in storage in the Slovakian capital. Another of the type, 5N-SMR (cn 11291), had recently undergone servicing and had been ferried back to Lagos.

"We already have one that had gone through C check; we are just waiting for this one. So if it has crashed it will be a great setback to us,” an anonymous IRS official told Nigeria's ThisDay newspaper.

Founded in 2002, the airline had offered extensive coverage of Nigeria using a fleet of Fokker 100s, B727-200s, B737-200s and Fokker 28-4000s.