Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, has categorically given the Federal Airports Authority (FAAN), a directive to get a befitting headquarters for itself stating that with all the money it makes, it can do better than its current state.
Amaechi who spoke before going on a familiarization tour of the Murtala Muhammed Airport in Lagos told the airport managers that they were making good returns and once done with every concern that is safety related, the agency should meet with the Federal Government and they can work out modalities to give FAAN a befitting headquarters.
Meanwhile, the Minister has also given the agencies express orders to recover their debt stating that there will be no sacred cows in the area of debt recovery.
He said,” You need to redouble effort to get the debt owed the agencies as there will be no sacred cow. We need to meet with the airline operators. There is nothing like bad debt. The monies they owe is not a tax on them but something they keep in trust for government, so we will talk to them.”
Also speaking on debt recovery the managing directors of FAAN and the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) took turns to explain their debt situation to the minister and hinted that no new debt was owed but the legacy debts by many airlines were still pending
Director General of the NCAA, Captain Usman Mukhar said that due to the debt profile, the NCAA has started taking the Passenger Service Charge (PSC) cash and carry.
“The airlines buy tickets and pay to our banks and when the passengers pay they can take that but for past debt it is huge and we are still reconciling that,” he said.
Managing Director of FAAN, Saleh Dunoma who spoke in the same line also said that for the legacy loan, FAAN is not providing services to airlines that owe and refuse to reconcile their loans.”