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Operators fault removal of NAMA managing director

Operators fault removal of NAMA managing director

The Federal Government has removed the Acting Managing Director of the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency, Mr. Mathew Pwajok, as part of a last-minute shake-up in the aviation sector.

As a result, the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, has reportedly appointed the Director of Airspace and Aerodromme at the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, Mr Tayib Odunowo, as his replacement.

This came barely one week after Sirika replaced the Managing Director of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, Captain Rabiu Yadudu, whose tenure expired last weekend.

In Yadudu’s place, the minister appointed Mr. Kabir Mohammed as the new Managing Director of FAAN.

Yadudu, a former Director of Airport Operations for the authority succeeded Saleh Dunouma, who also finished his tenure a few years ago. Yadudu was appointed in 2019.

As part of the shake-up, there are reports that the minister may still remove another aviation agency head as well as replace some directors.

However, operators and industry stakeholders have criticised Sirika’s actions, saying the last-minute changes could affect the sector.

They decried the non confirmation of the replaced NAMA MD, Pwajok, who was appointed in acting capacity in February 2022 and has since exceeded the six months acting stewardship of the agency.

Meanwhile, an industry pressure group, Aviation Round Table has condemned the last-minute activities of the minister, condemnable and unwarranted.

The group in a statement said, “For eight solid years, the Minister of Aviation appropriated the required governance structure under his personal control by neglecting to appoint the statutory governing boards required to ease the functions of the agencies and parastatals under him.

“The ART is of the opinion that this amongst other actions taken by the minister regressed rather than grown the organisations. The minister’s direct control resulted in transactional rather than functional operation of the agencies, thereby impeding their progress and his rating.

“The minister through his micromanagement activities has further demonstrated the need to scrap the Ministry of Aviation and place the various departments with proper governance structures back in the Ministry of Transport while granting independence to Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority under the appropriate internationally recognised structures for regulating the Nigerian aviation sector to achieve global best practices.’’

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