Connect with us


AMCON gives Arik Air owner condition to recover airline



Nigerian govt stops planned dismissal of 300 Arik Air staff

The chairman of Arik Air, Johnson Arumemi-Ikide, has been told to provide a suitable debt recovery plan before Assets Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) returns the airline to him.

Ahmed Kuru, the managing director (MD) of AMCON, said the government’s debt recovery agency took over Arik Air in February 2017 because of N300 billion in debt and mismanagement.

Kuru, in a report by NAN on Tuesday, said AMCON saved Arik Air from imminent collapse, as a resolution agency of the government, “looks forward to any obligor or debtor that wants to come to discuss repayment plan with us,” the MD said.

Arumemi-Ikide has been trying to recover Arik Air from AMCON. He took the corporation to the Federal High Court, which faulted AMCON for restricting the owner of the airline from the aviation company’s facilities.

Also, the court faulted AMCON’s handling of Arik’s asset transfer to establish a new airline company.

Addressing the disagreement between Arumemi-Ikide and AMCON, Kuru said the agency was ready to sit down and listen to a reasonable debt recovery plan to determine if it should end its receivership with the airline.

“Our doors are always open to resolve debts because that is our primary function and aside from our recovery mandate, AMCON does not have a secret agenda.

READ ALSO:Arik Air needs investment to survive, not feud with AMCON, aviation workers cry out

“So the challenges of the founder of the airline to recover his airline might seem difficult, but not irredeemable, however, there is always a way out of every situation.

“There must always be a situation of give and take and AMCOM is now ready to sit down with the owners of Arik, if they are ready to agree on what is good for them and the Federal Government.

“When we engage and arrive at an agreement, we will go back to the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) as well as the Ministry of Finance (MOF), and share such resolution strategy with them,” Arumemi-Ikide said.

He said Arik Air had two weeks to survive if AMCON had not intervened when it did, as the airline wasn’t paying staff salaries and didn’t have the funds to fuel its planes for operation.

“At that time the government mandated AMCON to intervene, the airline was not paying staff salary, or insurance, and could not afford to buy aviation fuel to keep the planes flying.

“It was so bad that nobody including some key aviation international partners wanted to do business with Arik among other issues,” Kuru said.

Kuru further disclosed that Arik Air was facing a serious crisis to remain operational, as flights were being delayed for up to three days straight and its aircraft abroad were being arrested.

Meanwhile, he said debtors are now avoiding calls from AMCON since reports that the government will wind up the debt recovery agency. Kuru warned that just because AMCON would be closed doesn’t mean the government will forgive their debt.

Join the conversation


Support Ripples Nigeria, hold up solutions journalism

Balanced, fearless journalism driven by data comes at huge financial costs.

As a media platform, we hold leadership accountable and will not trade the right to press freedom and free speech for a piece of cake.

If you like what we do, and are ready to uphold solutions journalism, kindly donate to the Ripples Nigeria cause.

Your support would help to ensure that citizens and institutions continue to have free access to credible and reliable information for societal development.

Donate Now