Former Governor of Abia State, Dr. Orji Uzor Kalu, has lauded the Federal Government for opting for a Private Public Partnership (PPP) model for the recently unveiled national airline, Nigeria Air.
Kalu, who is also the Chairman of Slok Group, while commending President Muhammadu Buhari-led government for finally giving Nigerians a national airline, also requested that a similar PPP model be adopted in the establishment of viable rail and water transportation mode for Nigerians.
Kalu’s words, “The Federal Government should just owe 5 percent in the national airlines must praise the Minister of State for Aviation and the people that put the structure that is making waves today.
“Those structure are solid ones and if they can maintain it, Nigeria Air will compete with other foreign carriers that dominate our airspace,” he added.
Kalu, who spoke with aviation correspondents at the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos, on Wednesday, expressed the optimism that the establishment of a national airline would go a long way in stemming the huge capital flight associated with the patronage of foreign airlines by Nigerians.
“I laud the good initiative of the government in establishing a national airline for a country like Nigeria where as citizens we are spending all our money on foreign airlines.
“It is good we have a strong dominant airline back up by government. The government has done fantastically well; that is what l believe should be done.
“But it should be replicated in the rail, waterways, shipping line and other transport industries. Ethiopian Airlines is still own by government.
“I maintain all my aircraft with them so l know that they are capable of doing. Government should not event stop at that, they should allow the private sector initiative to go into the new shipping line and others.
“Those criticising Nigeria Air never knew that it is only through the government that you can build a strong economy. It is only when government invests in the economy managed by private sector that we can have move forward,” Kalu added.