June 2, 2023

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AIRPORT CONCESSION: Financial Adviser, Project Delivery Team, Fall Short of Expectation- Nnolim Nnaji

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The House of Representatives Committee on Aviation seems ready to pick up the proposed concession program of the airports at the jugular, as it requested for critical documents that would help all and sundry have a good picture of the financial status and the performance of existing concessions in the four airports pencilled for concession.

At a meeting with the aviation minister and his team from the aviation ministry, the Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Aviation, Nnolim Nnaji, requested the minister to provide for his committee, “copy of the outline business case, OBC, for the concession, the Chinese loan agreement for the four airports slated for concession, report of the Project Delivery Team, (PDT) and the report of the Financial Adviser, (FAD).

Also requested by the legislators for consideration are, the assets evaluation report of the affected airports, (AER), cash flow, CF, of the airports, (those that are slated for concession), for the last five years, copies of all existing concessions in each of the four airports, the on-lending agreement, repayment schedule and every other document pertaining to the Airport concession.

Aminu Kano International Airport, Kano State, Nigeria

According to Nnaji, the reports from the Financial Adviser, FAD, and that of the Project Delivery Team, PDT, as constituted by the Minister, fell below expectation hence the need for instituting a subcommittee to review the reports of the FAD and the PDT.

He explained the rationale for the painstaking approach of his committee thus, “Our aim is not to unnecessarily meddle with the policies of the executive but as the representatives of the people, we would not close our eyes to issues that may create instability and unrest in this critical sector”.

Honourable Nnaji in his opening remarks had emphasized that the intervention of the committee was not intended to oppose the policy of the executive but to make sure that Nigeria and Nigerians are not shortchanged.

Nnaji, however, added a caveat that, “in addressing this matter, l expects all of us to be sensitive and show understanding to safeguard the industry and the national economy”.

He said further, ” l equally expect all parties to be prepared to shift positions where necessary in the interest of peace and harmony. There should be no rigidity on the part of labour and the ministry. Let everyone be guided by one ideal- the overall interest of the nation”, he added

Responding, the Aviation Minister, Senator Hadi Sirika, also assured the committee that the entire exercise would be transparent and the ministry will cooperate with the subcommittee to ensure that proper things are done.

The meeting was adjourned for continuous interactions to review the progress until all the contentious areas are resolved.

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