By Ejike Ejike, Abuja
Minister of aviation Senator Hadi Sirika has urged aviation stakeholders to tighten their belts and device means by which the sector will adapt and operate efficiently with COVID-19 pandemic, inferring that COVID-19 might linger for a while.
He said this has become necessary as the sector cannot afford to take back seat nor derail from the implementation of the roadmap being pursued by the ministry.
Sirika stated this at the opening of a 4-day capacity building retreat for senior management staff of the ministry and its parastatals on Tuesday.
According to him: “The aviation sector in 2020 was the worst affected by the pandemic. This happened at a time when the sector was the fastest-growing sector of the Nigerian economy, signifying that our modest effort and roadmap is not only on the right direction but yielding the right results.
“I noticed that included in the retreat objectives was a discussion on issues and challenges on the implementation of the aviation roadmap. I will urge the retreat to treat and dissect the aviation sector roadmap to digest its content and facilitate its implementation,” he stated.
The minister implored the participants to come up with a framework for improving the relationship between ministry and its agencies to the level that will not only achieve a very high level of implementation of the roadmap, but will also smoothen the inter-agency relationship.
Spokesperson of the ministry, James Odaudu, said earlier in his welcome remark, the permanent secretary of the ministry, Engr. Hassan Musa said aviation was a very peculiar sector which is subjected to international regulation and audit, which means that all activities are measured by international standards.
According to the permanent secretary, the retreat was organised in order to forge the synergy that would facilitate the realisation of the objectives of the aviation roadmap, which, on its own, is geared towards the overall development of the sector.
The theme of the retreat was “ The Ministry of Aviation and its Parastatals: A symbiotic relationship for National Development, Growth and Progress”