The Federal Executive Council (FEC) has turned down a request by the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) to convert Arik Air into a national carrier.
Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika stated this yesterday while briefing State House Correspondents after the FEC meeting presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
AMCON Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer, Ahmed Kuru, had made the suggestion to change the status of the airline, after its takeover by the Federal Government following the airline’s financial crisis and bankruptcy.
The AMCON chief executive also argued that the airline had been restructured and positioned on the path of growth and profitability.
Kuru explained that a new airline would cost the Federal Government a fortune, especially in the face of the nation’s tight budget.
Speaking at the briefing alongside the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed and the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, Sirika said Arik Air now under the management of government is not suitable for a national carrier.
The Aviation Minister said that Arik Air business plan was not in conformity with the government’s idea of a national carrier.
He said: “I think something is not understood very well from the standpoint of the Ministry of Aviation via the intended national carrier. The carrier that I intend to bring is such a carrier that will support national economy, with $450 million GDP for 200 million people, very equipped to compete favourably.
By: Anule Emmanuel