Appoint Aviator With Track Record Aviation Minister, Union Urges Buhari | Independent Newspapers Limited
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Appoint Aviator With Track Record Aviation Minister, Union Urges Buhari

Posted: May 22, 2015 at 12:30 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

The National Association of Air Transport Employees (NUATE), has called on the President-elect Muhammadu Buhari to appoint an aviator as the next aviation minister in order to move the industry forward.

NUATE’s Assistant General Secretary, Comrade Olayinka Abioye made the call in a congratulatory letter to the President-elect Muhammadu Buhari.

Abioye warned that an internationally regulated and highly technical industry such as aviation should not be left in the hands of political manipulators and jobbers, but in the hands of a principled, properly trained and experienced professional with a track record of integrity, performance and strong character.

According to him, “The choice of a core professional would also inspire other professionals in the sector to work hard and be counted. In the same vein, a professional would be better positioned to stop ‘cutting of corners’ a term used to refer to malpractices in the sector.

He added, “A professional would also be well positioned and better equipped to address the critical issue of safety, security and development of the nation’s airports and airspace, which has been neglected over the years in favour of remodelling which provides “faster and cheaper money for the boys.”

The NUATE scribe lamented that since the advent of democracy in the country 16 years ago no aviation professional has been appointed as Aviation Minister, adding that it has retarded progress in the sector and Nigeria as a nation.

He urged the President-elect to consider the role played by the aviation sector as the biggest promoter of international trade since the 20th century, noting that Nigeria, the most populous black nation on earth and one of the largest exporters of crude oil in the world has not attracted as much foreign direct investment as it should have done due to a number of factors that has to do with safety and security of the nation’s airport and airspace.

“As a responsible trade union concerned with the growth and development of the aviation sector of our National economy, we have found it extremely expedient to canvass a policy thrust that will galvanise the industry into providing a safe, secure and efficient air transport industry. Taking cognisance of the significance of aviation as a global business with the challenges and complexities of managing airports, airlines and air navigation facilities as well as human traffic, it is our conviction that leadership of such an internationally regulated and highly technical industry should not be left in the hands of political manipulators and jobbers.”

NUATE however advised that in appointing a professional to be a minister of aviation care must be taken to avoid bringing on board some of those, who were responsible for the destruction and ultimate demise of the Nigeria Airways Limited (NAL) and the aviation sector as a whole.