IT seems like all avenues open to rescue Aero Contractors has been exhausted and no head way made, as staff of the 59 year old carrier took round the Murtala Muhammed Airport to press their demand that the Asset Management Company of Nigeria (AMCON) desist from shutting the airline down illegally.
According to the protesters AMCON has threatened to liquidate the airline, which they put in the precarious position it is, despite the airlines prospects and not considering the ripple effect of the action against a sick Nigerian economy.
Aero Contractors employs over 1 500 Nigerians and the company has embroiled in serious financial problems for a few years that cumulated with the announcement that the airline was suspending scheduled operations because it could no longer sustain operations.
Since that moment it has been one mediation after the other with the Minister of State, Aviation wading into the matter but explaining the harsh reality on ground due to the mismanagement of the airline.
Today however, staff of the airline are protesting over rumors of the airlines foreclosure and calling on everyone to help save the airline .
The statement intercepted by Nigerianflightdeck.com read,”This is calling on all well-meaning Nigerians to please come to the aid of Aero Contractors this critical time in her life. aero should not be allowed to die from the stranglehold of AMCON who presently have 60%share of the airline.”
“AMCON was set up to revive ailing companies just are doctors are to administer drugs and follow procedures to resuscitate a sick patient, but AMCON has instead become the undertaker as it is evident that no company has ever been revived by AMCON.”
The staff went on to recount the massive fraud that led the airline to its current predicament.
“There was an orchestrated fraud where the owners of Oceanic Bank and its subsidiaries who also happen to be owners of Aero Contractors as at 2008/09 got loans in the airline’s name to airy aircraft and transfer same airplanes to Oceanic Capitals( Subsidiary to Oceanic Bank) and leased it back to Aero Contractors. All documents relating to this deal was allegedly destroyed while the debt from there from was transferred to Aero Contractors.”
“Ecobank that acquired Oceanic Bank could not accommodate the debt because it was controversial and toxic and as such AMCON bought over the loan from Ecobank in 2011.”
The protesters further explained that before AMCON bought over the loan, Aero had 11 operational aircraft and claimed it injected N12billion which had found its way into private pockets of AMCON representatives in Aero Contractors through shady consultancies and salaries.