Cracks have emerged in the ranks of the Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON) following allegations that the choice of its new leaders was frought with anomalies after and disenfranchisement of several members.
At the Annual General Meeting of the Association held at the Murtala Muhammed Airport terminal two (MMA2) Conference Hall on September 16, the Chairman of Azman Air, Abdulmunaf Yunusa Sarina, was elected President, taking over from Captain Nogie Meggison, while the Chairman of Air Peace, Allen Onyema, emerged the Vice President.
Other newly elected executive members are Shehu Wada of Max Air, while the Chief Executive Officer of Med-View Airline, Muneer Bankole, his counterpart at Overland Airways, Captain Edward Boyo, among others were elected as members of the Board of Trustees. The AGM also approved the change of leadership nomenclature from Executive Chairman to President.
In his acceptance speech, Yunusa expressed gratitude to the Association and pledged to work hard and ensure that the challenges airlines are facing like multiple taxation, VAT, duty waiver and forex constraints would be addressed.“As an active member of AON, I am fully aware of all the pending matters and problems facing our Association such as the issue of multiple taxation, VAT and Federal Government’s intervention to airline operators, duty waiver and forex. I will like to assure you that I will continue from where the former chairman stopped to take the matter up with all relevant authorities until we achieve our goals.
“Although it is difficult for an association like AON to solve its problems, we shall do our very best. I am therefore requesting the cooperation and support from each and every one of you to achieve that. I will like to thank the former Chairman for the success recorded during his tenure and hope that he will always be available to advise and guide us,” Yunusa said.
However, the chairman of West Link Airlines, Captain Ibrahim Mshelia told the media that many members of the Association were disenfranchised and the minutes of the last meeting were not ratified and adopted at Wednesday’s AGM.. He said he was made aware of the election late but that he was not in attendance and therefore did not participate.
Explaining why he didn’t participate. He said: “I am bereaved. We lost our most beloved Royal Father who was very close to me, so I was home to console my people and came back last night. However, even if I was next door to the event, I would not have participated because not all members were invited to the AGM and I am not convinced yet why they exempted some members for an AGM. But yes, West Link was invited to the meeting alright. But I had asked the Managing Director not to attend nor send delegation if he finds out that not every member was invited.
“I was in the village and was told he did not attend. Confirming to me that not all but the selected members only were invited to an AGM that we all knew an election was to be held.
“Now that they have held the AGM with some members; left out some other members and went ahead to elect executives for AON as I have now heard. The question on my mind now before I find the right moment to ask it is; have they now split AON? If they have, into how many, and where do they put the invited and those not invited? What’s been going on since our 5th February 2020 meeting where so many decisions were taken but yet to be ratified is better kept in-house to AON because I feel so embarrassed personally at some of the actions.”