By ANTHONY AWUNOR, Lagos –
Except the Federal Government constitutes a Board of Directors for aviation parastatals , the ministry will continue to get it wrong in terms of employment, policies and resource management.
This is the position of aviation professionals in the sector who have equally called on the Presidency to urgently constitute the Board of Directors for the aviation parastatals so that things can work smoothly.
The aviation body-Association of Nigerian Aviation Professionals (ANAP) therefore, implored President Muhammadu Buhari to hearken to their voice and speedily save the industry from undue pressure from the aviation ministry.
Speaking through its Secretary General, Comrade Abdulrazaq Saidu, the body made up of aviation professionals pointed out that, due to the fact that there is no Board of Directors on ground, the aviation ministry has been interfering on the day to day running of the parastatals which is not supposed to be so.
According to Comrade Saidu, the roles of Board of Directors is in the Act that establishes them; he however, pointed out that it is a deliberate act by the previous government to dissolve them so that they can have direct control of the funds of these parastatals.
Saidu said by so doing, the powers that be, have been able to gain control of issues that have to do with Bilateral Air Services Agreements (BASA), IGR, employments, funds, budget, staff salary and other matters that were statutory vested on the Board of Directors.
He said “It is a deliberate act and that brought about improper placements, whereby they brought people to make the top heavy. The top is so heavy in each of parastatals, which makes their wage bill heavy too”.
On the interference of the minister in the affairs of the parastatals, Saidu said “Definitely, he is interfering; you can see the CEOs don’t even stay to do their jobs in Lagos, they are always in Abuja. Don’t forget that PMB merged some ministries together. The ministry of Aviation is supposed to be under transport but it has been functioning as an island of its own. The ministry is not adding value to the system; it is just a duplication of functions. It is the Board of aviation parastatal that will checkmate things happening in the sector. I am calling on the President to constitute Board of Directors of Aviation parastatals.
On the recent appointments made in the sector, Saidu condemned the idea of bringing people from outside to take certain strategic position in the parastatals, adding that the top echelon of power in the system is already heavy which calls for heavy wage bills too.
“Appointment is vested on the Board and not the ministry. All the appointments are null and void. We will take them on. There should be board in NCAA and other parastatals”.