Convert FAAN to airport mgt coy, expert urges FG

An aviation expert and pioneer Chief Executive, Integrated Intelligence Imaging West Africa Ltd (I-CUBE WA Ltd), Moyosola Niran-Oladunni, has called for the review of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), stating that the agency needs to be wholly privatised and remodelled as Nigerian Airports Management Holding Company.
He reiterated that his idea is to convert FAAN to Nigeria Airports Management Holding Company with the Federal Government controlling substantial equity holding.
To him, the holding company would formulate and determine their holdings in all other airports with interested privately owned entities. Niran-Oladunni told Woleshadarenew  that by doing this, they would be able to determine the redundancy ratio of their workforce and improve efficiency in line with their investment interests.
“Let me tell you something, aside from the aviation security directorate, all the other directorates in FAAN are commercial and business related. And we all know how government agencies react and/or function in a business environment.
” He explained that just two airports, namely the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos and the Nnamdi Azikiwe Airport, Abuja, are responsible for the funding of all the other airports totalling about 28, adding that one would think that the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), which is the statutory regulatory authority in the industry be saddled with more responsibilities such as the aviation security while the other commercial activities be ceded to a wholly business entity.
He advised that the Federal Government may still own a substantial equity holding in the company, stressing that it will amount to duplication of duties to still keep an agency like FAAN and come up with the idea of concessioning the aerodromes.
On the viability of Lagos and Abuja airports, while others are unviable, Niran- Oladunni disclosed that there is no airport that is not viable and decried the attitude of the managers of the airports that’s the challenge.
His words: “We all know the attitude of our people to anything related to government. Rather than for people to think out of the box and make things happen, they will rather prefer to lobby to be posted to an already booming location. They call it juicy posting. That’s one of the reasons behind the deficit recorded at most of the airports.
“Take for instance the Jos Airport. May be we have a flight going to Jos from Abuja just once in a week. The airport is sitting on a land mass in the range of 17sqkm. The Airport has all cadres of operations staff. But the airport cannot even generate the revenue to pay the remuneration of its staff. “But someone would say, an airport in Jos is not viable, while an airport in Ilorin or Ibadan or Benin is viable?
I can assure you, if the Jos Airport is jointly owned by Plateau State Government, an airline, and other interested investors, the story would change,” he added. He carpeted the over N500 billion allegedly spent on airport remodelling by past administration, describing it as waste of resources because there was no visible signs to show that the funds were judiciously spent.
“The answer to this is obvious to all Nigerians unless we want to continue deceiving one another. Have you seen anything around our airports that could justify the amount you just mentioned?
Wole Shadare

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