Nigeria’s aviation sector most hostile to investors – Na’Allah - PUNCH
BY Leke Baiyewu, Abuja
The Deputy Majority Leader of the Senate, Senator Bala Ibn Na’Allah, on Tuesday described Nigeria’s aviation sector as the most hostile to investors.
Na’Allah said this when the leadership of the National Association of Aircrafts Pilots and Engineers visited his office in Abuja.
The President of NAAPE, Mr. Jacob Ogwu, had urged Na’Allah to use his capacity as the Vice Chairman of the Senate Committee on Aviation and an investor in the sector to make the National Assembly beam its searchlight on the problems bedevilling the industry.
The pilots and engineers also urged the Senate to ensure creation of jobs in the sector through legislation that would stimulate growth in the industry.
But Na’Allah, in his response, stated that the executive and not the legislature should be pressurised to urgently tackle the problems in the sector.
He said, “Nigeria’s aviation sector, being the most hostile one to investors and other key players, the current 8th Senate, within three months of its inception in 2015, debated on a motion sponsored by me on problems bedevilling the sector and came up with a far-reaching 24-point resolution on the way out, but none of the resolutions has been considered by the executive for more than two years now.
“So, to us in the Senate, and by extension the National Assembly, we have done the needful by proffering solutions. It is left for the executive to implement the resolutions.”
He added, “As we stand today, we have the most hostile aviation operation environment and you cannot develop aviation under this hostile environment. It is not possible because business people want to make profits.
“Unless we look at these issues seriously, we can never guarantee the growth of general aviation, which will serve as a support to the airline and thereby create a robust economic stimulant for movement of goods and services in Nigeria.”
The lawmaker expressed his sympathy for the young pilots who were faced by joblessness due to limited flying experience.
“The Industry is built more on safety consideration and not brilliance exhibited by any pilot while in training. No brilliance in flying. Rather, it is cumulative hours of flying achieved by a pilot.
The more hours of flying a pilot has to his credit, the easier he gets engaged by airline owners,” he noted.
Na’Allah advised the pilots to continue to add to their hours of flying on daily basis by renting aircraft for the purpose, which he noted though would be expensive.