Uche Usim, Abuja
The Minister of Aviation, Mr Hadi Sirika, has assured anxious Nigerians that the implementation of the new roadmap for the sector is on course, saying business cases for the national carrier and Aerospace University projects are ready.
The Minister, who made the disclosures on his verified Tweeter handle @hadisirika on Tuesday said:
“The approved aviation roadmap is on course. We had investor conference yesterday as promised. Bidders shortlisted. The remaining part of the roadmap, which includes National Carrier and Aerospace University, is running well. Business cases ready.”
The approved Aviation roadmap is on course. We had investor conference yesterday as promised. Bidders shortlisted. The remaining part of the roadmap, which includes National Carrier and Aerospace University, is running well. Business cases ready. 🙏🏽🇳🇬 https://t.co/yxw1VIuPDx
— Hadi Sirika (@hadisirika) February 25, 2020
Meanwhile, aviation experts have urged the Minister to urgently redesign the existing airport security architecture in the face of rising incidences of breaches, infractions and intrusion at airports.
Citing the upsurge in stowaways, intrusion into airports’ airside and other security infractions, they said the Minister of Aviation should put on the front burner measures to complete fencing of airports and their perimeter.
Aside from consolidating existing containment measures on the threat to airports security and air safety, they insist the minister should revisit ongoing recruitment of Aviation Security (AVSEC) and Aerodrome Fire Fighting and Safety Personnel attached to the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN).
On Monday, the Federal Government began the process of establishing an Aviation Leasing Company (ALC) and a Maintenance Repair and Overhaul (MRO) as it held a bidders conferences for the two concerns.
In attendance were officials of the Ministry of Aviation, Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), Federal Ministry of Finance, aviation labour unions, transaction advisers and prospective investors.
At the end of the conferences, one company, a consortium of AJ Walters/Glovesly/Egypt Air was shortlisted out of three for the Aviation Leasing Company.
For the Maintenance Repair and Overhaul (MRO) facility, two (2) companies namely AJ Walters/Glovesly/Egypt Air and Ethiopian Airlines were shortlisted out of seven that expressed interest.
Declaring the conferences open, the Director, Planning, Research and Statistics and Chairman of the Project Delivery Team, Alhaji Muhammad Shehu said the event marked another phase of the government’s determination to ensure the realization of the projects.
He also assured of a transparent process leading to the actualization of the projects which are being executed through public-private Partnerships. He said the cross-stakeholder representation at the conference underlined the government’s commitment to transparency.
Industry sources say local airlines spend about N360 billion annually on overseas maintenance, a development that amounts to huge capital flight.