- The National Assembly has intervened in the crisis at the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) regarding the mass resignation threat in critical departments.
- The National Assembly warned against any attempt to undermine the regulations of the aviation authority.
- The chairman of the House of Representatives’ Standing Committee on Aviation, Nnolim Nnaji, cautioned against actions that could weaken the oversight capabilities of the regulatory agency and urged the Minister of Aviation to follow proper processes for approving the Nigeria Air project.
The National Assembly has intervened in the crisis rocking the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) over the impending mass resignations in some of the critical departments in the agency.
The National Assembly also warned against any attempt to subvert the regulations of the apex agency in the industry.
Mr. Nnolim Nnaji, the Chairman of the House of Representatives’ Standing Committee on Aviation, stated this on Monday in a statement.
Reports claimed over the weekend that some top management staff of NCAA in the Airworthiness and Standards Department had threatened to resign en mass as of today following the attempt by top people in government to compel it to subvert its own rules by issuing the Air Operator Certificate (AOC) to Nigeria Air.
Why the rules of AOC must be followed
It was gathered that the technical personnel in the agency insisted that all the rules must be followed in issuing the AOC to the airline, which the Minister of Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika, had promised would operate before the end of this present administration.
Nnaji in a statement to journalists, cautioned against actions that might undermine the authority of the NCAA.
He warned that mass resignations among the critical personnel of the authority could lead to severe consequences for the oversight capabilities of the regulatory agency.
- He said: “I understand that some senior personnel of the authority are threatening to turn in their resignation letters over claims of pressure on the NCAA from the Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, to grant waivers to the proposed Nigeria Air.
- “It is a well-acknowledged fact that the minister has a passionate desire to deliver a national carrier to Nigerians, but if the project could not materialise under him, it shouldn’t be a do or die affair.
- “Government is a continuum. Whatever he could not accomplish, the next government or next minister after him will take over. I believe that any good projects he could not finish with his predecessor will not be abandoned so long as they will add value to the industry.”
He also cautioned Sirika to exercise restraints and allow the promoters of Nigeria Air to undergo the whole process and procedures for approval of the Air Transport Licence (ATOL) and Air Operator’s Certificate, (AOC).
Nnaji reminded the minister that at the last meeting with the House Committee on Aviation, he pledged to submit the proposed Airline’s Final Business Case (FBC), which would give details of all the investors and their shares, but he never did till date.
He stressed that the whole idea of Nigeria Air did not have the backing of the parliament because all the contentious issues raised by the legislature regarding the project remained unresolved.
Nnaji also observed that there were grave fear and panic in the industry at the moment over sack gale and urged the minister to douse the tension by coming out clean on what he planned to do.
Nnaji, who represents Nkanu East/West Federal Constituency of Enugu State, further noted that the industry remained a very sensitive and fragile sector that should be devoid of apprehension and trepidation in every respect.
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