June 2, 2023

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Hse of Reps Orders Probe of the Airport Concession Processes

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Hon Femi Gbajabiamila, Speaker House of Representatives

The House of Representatives at its plenary on Tuesday, after a very strong debate on the ongoing concession of the four most prosperous airports in the country, mandated the Committee on Privatization and Commercialization to investigate the concession of Nigerian Airports by the Federal Ministry of Aviation and report back within four (4) weeks for further legislative action.

The four airports which are the most prosperous ones and of which they have been advertised for interested bidders were, Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos, Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja, NAIA, Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, MAKIA, Kano,and the Port Harcourt International Airport, PHIA, Port Harcourt.

The House claimed awareness that, that the Federal Ministry of Aviation hads begun the process to concession the aforementioned Airports but without the involvement of National Council on Privatization, NPC, and the Board for Public Enterprises, BPE, which honourable members claimed was in violation of the Public Enterprises (Privatization and Commercialization), 1999 Act;

Honourable Kolade Akinjo moved the motion on the need to investigate the concession of some airports in Nigeria and it was seconded by Hon Adejoro Adeogun.

Hon. Chinyere Igwe, in speaking against the motion stated that the relevant government authorities were still in the process of planning the concession of the airports, hence the prayers of the motion are preemptive/speculative.

Hon Ademorin Kuye, the Deputy Chairman, House Committee on Rules and Business stated that the same motion had earlier been brought to the floor of the House and referred to the House Committee on Aviation.

Also, the Chairman of the Aviation Committee set up a sub-Committee led by Rep. Lynda Ikpeazu, and the matter is being investigated as the Minister of Aviation, as well as other relevant stakeholders had already been invited and who have already made their submissions.

Hon Akinjo, the Deputy Chairman of the House Committee on Privatization and Commercialization stated that the Committee was not in the know of the recent exercise as it was known that the process of concession had begun. It is on this ground he brought the motion to save public assets and safeguard the rule of law.

Hon Ben Mzondu proposed an amendment to mandate the House Committee on Privatization and Commercialization to join the House Committee of Aviation in addressing the issue.

Hon Toby Okechukwu, proposed an amendment to also incorporate the House Committee Oversight of the ICRC into the investigation.

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