03 November 2020 by James Itodo……
The Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika has suggested the establishment of Aviation Development Fund for the industry.
Senator Sirika gave the suggestion during his presentation in the ongoing three day
public hearing on the six aviation Executive Bills held in Abuja.
Amongst the bills being considered are “A Bill for an Act to repeal the Civil Aviation Act, 2006 and to Enact the Civil Aviation Act for the Regulation of Civil Aviation in Nigeria and for Other Related Matters, “A Bill for an Act to repeal the Nigerian College of Aviation Technology Act and to Enact the Nigerian Aviation Technology Act to provide for its organisation, control and operation and for related Matters. Also included is a Bill for an Act to repeal the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency Act for the purpose of providing effective Air Navigation.”
Responding to concerns over inadequate safety equipment at the nation’s airport, passenger comfort and perceived indifference of the regulatory agency, the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority, the Minister maintained that the strategic sector is battling with paucity of fund.
He said that the Aviation Development Fund being proposed with friendly interest rate would come handy for the sector to address its enormous financial challenges.
“We need Aviation Development Fund, where these money can be kept, where we are sure that the fund with little interest can be tapped. All we would then need is to boost our Internally Generated Revenue, (IGR).
According to senator Sirika,the Fund would help with passenger comfort, safety around airports stressing that the volume of capital could be deployed to ensure that every aviation equipment are available at the nation’s airports.
Expressing his concern over failure of airline operators under the aegis of Airlines Operators of Nigeria, ( AON) to remit their service charge, Senator Sirika recommended automated payment system to take care of cold war over default in remittance by members of the AON.
In his own presentation, Director General of Nigeria Air space Management Agency, NAMA, Fola Akinkuotu expressed delight over the proposed amendment of the Bill establishing NAMA as he noted that it would boost the much needed improvement and efficiency to improve safety in the nation’s airspace.