Rep Nnaji has blasted Sirika over a bribery allegation on Nigeria Air.
TheTimes reports that a House of Representatives member, Hon. Nnolim Nnaji has reacted to the allegation by former Aviation Minister, Hadi Sirika regarding Nigeria Air.
At a public hearing, Nnaji described the controversial project as a fraud and condemned the use of an Ethiopian Airlines’ registered aircraft during the launch in May.
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On Sunday, Sirika alleged that the former House Committee Chairman on Aviation asked him for 5 percent equity shares in the national carrier.
In response, Nnaji called Sirika a drowning man and advised him to tell citizens “the truth about the contraption he sold to us as Nigeria Air”.
Nnaji recalled that his committee was inundated with petitions from stakeholders after the announcement of Ethiopian Airlines as the core investor.
The committee, he noted, requested for evidence of the bid process and the business case prepared by the Nigerian Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC).
Nnaji said Sirika told them the document was being worked out by the ICRC and would make it available but failed to do so before Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON) sued the Ministry and got an order stopping the project.
“On May 20th 2023, l received reports of threats of mass resignations by key personnel of the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA),” he said.
The threat, according to him, followed pressures from the Ministry to give waivers to Nigeria Air to enable it secure Air Operator’s Certificate (AOC) so that it could take off before President Muhammadu Buhari leaves office.
Nnaji said he issued a statement warning the former Minister against subverting the authority of NCAA because of its severe consequences on the air transport sector.
“It is also common knowledge that the Nigerian institutional investors he mentioned as participants have all denied him.
“It is not strange that Sirika came up with these spurious allegations against my person because l remained consistent in demanding that he followed due process. He should not deviate from the subject”, Nnaji added.