A coalition of aviation unions and professional associations have called on the Federal Government to immediately appoint a substantive Managing Director for Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) to prevent workers from compromising safety and avoid vacuum in the agency.
The call is coming on the heels of the alleged looting of the agency and arrest of top officials of the agency over alleged N5billion fraud by the Economic and Financial Crime Commission (EFCC)
The call was contained in a statement signed by its spokesman, Johnson Agbede and made available to journalists.
He stated that if urgent steps were not taken, this could adversely compromise safety, as workers do not know whom to take directive from; adding that leadership tussle in the agency is currently tearing NAMA apart following the appointment of two officials in acting capacity in less than one week.
It will be recalled that the Minister of Transportation, Hon. Rotimi Amaechi had on February 16, 2016 directed Mr Emmanuel Anasi, an Acting Director in the agency act as the managing director following the arrest of the substantive Managing Director of the agency, Engr, Ibrahim Abdulsalam and three others by EFCC allegedly in connection with the N5 billion fraud.
However, directors, who were not comfortable with the minister’s appointment, petitioned the Ministry of Aviation that the tradition of allowing the most senior director to act as acting managing director was not applied, and that the agency was progressing in error.
Sequel to this petition, the Ministry on Friday directed Akangson, the current Director of Human Resources, who is the most senior director to take over as the Acting Managing Director.
Base on the leadership tussle in the agency, the Coalition of Aviation Unions and Professional Associations are worried that it may compromise safety ,calling on the Minister of Transportation & the Minister of State, Aviation,, Alhaji Hadi Sirika to as a matter of urgency intervene by appointing a substantive managing director before the leadership crisis gets out of hand .
“The huge financial scandal involving the management of NAMA is overwhelming for anybody to think he can come back to that office.”
The group argued that the organisation requires a substantive managing director, who will immediately re- organise and reposition the agency for the urgently needed service delivery.
The Unions reminded the authorities that last year and in 2014, they complained about poor state of communication equipment and other navigational facilities in the country’s airspace due to “corrupt practices in NAMA”, but that the previous government did not address these issues.
Recalled that the EFCC last week arrested four top officials of the agency which include: Managing Director, Ibrahim Abdulsalam, Director of Finance and Accounts, Mrs. Clara Aliche, Acting Director of Procurement, Muyiwa Adegorite, General Manager (Finance) Nurudeen Segun Agbolade and Project Manager,Felicia Agubata for alleged N5 billion fraud.
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