Stakeholders urge Minister to complete airport projects
Stakeholders in the aviation sector have set agenda for the new Minister of Aviation, Mr Osita Chidoka.
The stakeholders, including the National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers ( NAAPE), and Air Transport Senior Staff Association of Nigeria ( ATSSSAN), and the National Union of Air Transport Employees (NUATE), have urged the new minister to set in motion processes that would lead to the completion of all on-going airport projects.
The completion of such projects, the groups noted, would be part implementation of the aviation sector master plan and road map put in place by the immediate past minister of aviation, Princess Stella Oduah.
The implementation of the industry master plan, the groups added, is critical because it would address the challenge of infrastructure decay and obsolete airport and air navigation equipment that has lingered for many decades.
Also, as part of the issues they want the new minister to address is the collection of debts owed government agencies by both foreign and domestic carriers.
Others are the training of critical air safety personnel, including air traffic controllers, the provision of safety equipment at airports nationwide, as well review of the abolishment of payment of royalties and commercial agreement from foreign carriers.
The groups also want the minister to address the contentious issue of multiple entry points granted foreign carriers flying into the country.
The Public Relations Officer of NAAPE, Mr Bunmi Gindeh said though the association has received the appointment of the minister with mixed feelings, it admonished Chidoka to remain focused in the execution of projects and policies that would move the sector forward.
He said : “Like most industry stakeholders, NAAPE received with mixed feeling the news of the appointment of Mr. Osita Chidoka as the new Minister of Aviation by President GoodLuck Jonathan.
“While Mr. Chidoka’s youthful, vibrant and forward-looking disposition and antecedent calls for enthusiasm and hope, his apparent lack of aviation experience is clearly a major cause for concern.
“Over the years, NAAPE has consistently called on Mr. President to give us an experienced aviation professional as Minister. But this call has consistently been unheeded. The result is that the aviation industry has suffered stunted growth.”
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