- As regulator debunks allegations of partiality in charges collections
ARIK Air has joined other domestic airlines including Dana Air, Aero, Medview and Overland on the automation platform of the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), a move meant to ease revenue collection and improve transparency of process by all involved.This is just as the NCAA has said that rumours that some airlines were being exempted from paying 5% Ticket and Cargo sales charges were not true as no waiver has been given to any airline as alleged in certain quarters.
The automation platform is meant to deduct at source the 5% Ticket and Cargo sales charges accruing to the NCAA but shared by five agencies also including the Nigeria Airspace Management Agency, NAMA, the Nigeria College of Aviation Technology, Zaria NCAT, the Nigeria Meteorological Agency, NIMET and the Accident Investigation Bureau, AIB.
At the presentation of the signed automation Agreement at the NCAA headquarters, the Director General, NCAA, Captain Muktar Usman said the deduction was in line with the provision of the Nigeria Civil Aviation Regulations NCARs.
Captain Muktar while congratulating Arik Air for being fully complaint with the regulations said the automation system ensures transparency and urged other airlines yet to do so to urgently reconsider their decision.
He observed that everyone expects efficiency from the regulatory Authority and thus it was necessary to do what was expected of them to help the authority succeed.
Captain Usman explained that the 5% ticket and cargo sales charges were shared between , adding the NCAA does not take money from government but generates its revenue internally from these charges.
He emphasized that the step taken by Arik to join other airlines who had joined the platform was a sign of a continuous working relationship, stressing that there must be synergy between the operators and the regulatory agency.
According to Captain Usman, all airlines have the same level playing field, pays what was due and no exemption had been given to anyone, adding that no special waiver had been given to any airline on the charges because charges were split in the Civil Aviation Act 2006.
Recall, the AON in a previous statement had alleged that the NCAA was exempting certain airlines from the charges and other charges and were being unfair to others.
Usman said,”Coming on the platform means transparency, more efficiency, less time spent on reconciliation. we want to use this opportunity to encourage others that are not fully in complaint to do, we do not like to force people to come and do so. The 5% charges are meant to take care of 5 agencies, NCAA, NAMA, AIB, NCAT and NIMET. Of the 5 agencies, the Civil aviation Authority demands on the 5% as its internally generated revenue and does not take money from the federal government”.
“We depend on this to run this organization. I want to congratulate Arik for this bold step”, he added.
Responding, Arik Air Managing Director, Captain Roy IIegbodu said Arik Air was committed to associating with the future and believed that this was a step in the right direction.
He noted that automation was all about technology and the airline supports technology and would continue to join all parties in the industry to develop technology.
“One of the thing I would like to say is that the team that worked with us was very supportive, they work through last year and this year, it is not an easy task, automation itself is complex. We will continue to do our utmost to support the growth of aviation in Nigeria”.
Director, Air Transport Regulation NCAA ,retired group captain Edem Oyo-Ita in closing the brief ceremony said, Arik had proven that they are sincere in what they were doing and urged them to also look at the reduction in airfares with the recent removal of 5% VAT on shared transportation by the Federal Government.