From Magnus Eze, Abuja
THE Minister of State for Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika has raised the alarm that fraudsters are on the prowl on the internet and scamming innocent people with his name.
Sirika made the disclosure while receiving reports from members of the Aviation Security Assessment and the Civil Aviation Acts 2006 Review committees, headed by Air Commodore Hamladi Tukur (rtd) and Ibrahim Idriss, in Abuja.
Disturbed by the menace of internet scammers, Sirika said he no longer operates any email, Facebook, Twitter or any other social media accounts as fraudsters have taken them over to defraud gullible Nigerians.
“I cannot see how somebody can give employment on the internet. I want to say categorically that I no longer have a Facebook account, because there are about 10 Facebook accounts in my name. I have no email anymore because I have about 300 email accounts in my name,” Sirika said.
On the weakness of the 2006 Civil Aviation Act, he said: “And even at that time, I was more than convinced that the 2006 Act was inadequate and was done in a rush. I knew also that it had some limitations and I knew that it will have some operational difficulties.”
He lamented that the first Civil Aviation Act enacted in 1964 was already obsolete before the first amendment in 2006.
“I was the Deputy Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Aviation and I reviewed the Act which went through a lot of hitches and eventually we had a document which was the 2006 Act as amended.”
Sirika regretted that he could not do much as a senator and member of the committee in 2007 because he was neither the chairman nor the deputy, and being the only aviator in the Senate at the time.
Now that he is the minister overseeing the sector, Sirika explained that there is need to perfect the Act because of the dynamism of the industry, which is ever changing.
He said government would develop policies within the national laws so as to control the menace and some disadvantages that characterize the sector.