Tinubu to Revisit Buhari’s Concession of Two Nigerian Airports

by Ohepo Ohepo

ABUJA, NIGERIA – Nigeria’s Minister of Aviation, Festus Keyamo, has announced that the current administration will review the previous concession agreements for two major airports to ensure greater transparency. This declaration was made during the ministerial sectoral update commemorating President Bola Tinubu’s first year in office.

Reassessing Concession Agreements

Keyamo emphasized the necessity for transparency in the concession process, stating, “We are starting the process of concession of airports all over again to make it more transparent. Bureaucracy cannot run public infrastructure.”

This decision comes in the wake of former President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration’s concession of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja and the Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport in Kano to Corporacion America Airports Consortium. The concession agreements included an upfront payment of $7 million for a 20-year concession of the Abuja airport and $1.5 million for a 30-year concession of the Kano airport, with total expected revenue surpassing $4 billion over the concession period.

The Nigerian Senate, led by Deputy Senate President Barau Jibrin, had previously raised concerns about the transparency of these deals. Upon taking office, Keyamo suspended these concession plans and has now committed to revisiting them to meet higher standards of transparency.

Suspension of Nigeria Air Project

Keyamo also addressed the suspension of the national carrier project, Nigeria Air. He criticized the launch of the carrier by his predecessor, Hadi Sirika, describing it as deceptive. “What was launched last year was an Ethiopian Airlines plane bearing Nigeria’s flag,” Keyamo remarked, underscoring the importance of the national carrier being fully indigenous.

Last year, just days before the end of his tenure, Sirika launched Nigeria Air, a move that was met with widespread skepticism and criticism. The House of Representatives Committee on Aviation condemned the launch, calling it fraudulent and demanding the prosecution of those involved.

Future Plans for Aviation Sector

During his address, Keyamo outlined a robust plan for the aviation sector aimed at overcoming current challenges and fostering future growth. He emphasized the need to develop a master plan for major airports to transform them into proper hubs, support and empower local operators to compete internationally, and facilitate the acquisition of aircraft under dry lease agreements. Additionally, there will be a review of Bilateral Air Service Agreements (BASA) to favor local operators.

“Despite current challenges, there is hope and confidence about the future of the aviation sector,” Keyamo concluded, highlighting the ministry’s commitment to enhancing infrastructure and supporting domestic airlines to thrive on international routes.

You may also like

Are you sure want to unlock this post?
Unlock left : 0
Are you sure want to cancel subscription?
Update Required Flash plugin
Verified by MonsterInsights