May 12, 2021

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Nigeria’s National Carrier becomes reality in less than 12 months- Hadi Sirika

4 min read

Cheering news and good tidings are brought to about 10 million air travelers in Nigeria and to the over 200 million populations as, the government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, has given a reassurance to deliver on the promise made in 2015, to bequeath to Nigerians, an efficient, safe and profitable national carrier that all Nigerians shall be proud of.

Nigeria’s Aviation Minister, Senator Hadi Abubakar Sirika, who gave the reassurance, in an announcement in his tweet, said of the national carrier thus @hadisirka, “We will launch it Q2 2021, in sha Allah”

The Minister’s announcement was his response to a question asked by a Nigerian named, Hussain Abubakar, @BRABOII, who asked, “When will the national carrier become realistic?”

A quick response from the Minister said that “We will launch it Q2 2021, in sha Allah”. The response was greeted with mixed feelings by a section of the populace while others expressed enthusiasm at the comment.

Right on the Minister’s Twitter handle, the following reactions ensued about the good news which was backed with a sworn oath in the name of the greatest personality who is the most gracious and the most benevolent and the most revered, ALLAH, Subhanahu wa ta’ala, SWT.

Here is the response to the Minister’s reassurance by another citizen, OFAADA @Ofaada who asked series of rhetorical questions thus, “Where’s the public discussion & stakeholder buy-in on a plan of this magnitude? Who’s paying for it and what’s the strategy behind it? U call us unfair critics but u’re the 1 who claims absolute knowledge of solutions to a national problem. Is that the way govt should work?”

Oyelade Hamzat @hamoye4real, joined the fray with a prayer thus; “Baraka Allah fikum sir, May Allah bring it to fruition”.

Senator Hadi Sirika, Aviation Minister

Another respondent is, Hon.Ibrahim B Hassan, @IbeeHass, who expressed optimism in the project and simply tweeted thus, “wish you the very best”
Eno Jonathan, @EnoJonathanO, in his tweet made use of an image, a baby eating noodles without gusto, whatever its import, sadly it cannot be impressed clearly to everyone’s understanding.

Olayemi, @OlayemiDev, described the announcement as “no bad vibes”. Another contributor who joined the trend, Silent Hustler, @Akorede, tweeted thus, “Make we dey observe Sha”.

A fellow compatriot, Abubakar, the Minister’s namesake, who started the discourse with a very simple honest question which the Minister graciously provided an answer and inturn triggered diverse reactions, concluded with a prayer laced with optimism in the actualization of the promise of a national airline. Hussain Abubakar, @BRABOII, prayed that “May God bless honourable minister”.

Also, early in the week, at the senate, the Minister reiterated to journalists in Abuja that, the much-touted air carrier will be delivered before the end of the tenure of this administration. The life of the present administration will end in 2023.

Senator Hadi Sirika in Abuja, still on the recurring issue of a national airliner, retorted that “We are on it. The transaction adviser has brought in the Outline Business Case, OBC. It is being reviewed by the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission, ICRC”.

Shedding more light on the obviously vexatious modus operandi for birthing the airliner, Sirika further volunteered what will happen after the OBC returns from, ICRC, “Soon after its completion, it will go to the federal executive council for approval. We will not leave this government without having it in place.” By that pronouncement, the project becomes a visa for this government to move to the next level

Recalled the zoom conference by the Nigeria Economic Summit Group, NESG, in September 2020, which was the annual ritual ahead of the summit proper, the Minister also announced that the name of the airline, Nigeria Air, had been dropped.

He said at the virtual forum that a carrier would still be brought to fruition but not in a semblance of the national carrier with a national name emblazon as its livery.

The Minister then added that the airline that would finally be established would still be able to ape the role played by the continent’s leading airline, Ethiopian Airline.

Without mincing words, concerned industry stakeholders are now at the crossroad as regard this national project.

They have raised more questions than the aviation ministry had ever been able to find an honest answer to.

However, since the airliner’s livery was unveiled at the Farnborough Air Show in the United Kingdom on 18th, July 2018, not much is heard or seen about the project but much transpired in terms of budgetary allocations and release of the capital vote for consultancies and other sundry items, ostensibly towards the anticipatory birth of the airline.

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