The Federal Government said it will formally address stakeholders in the aviation sector and the general public later this month on why it suspended the national carrier project.
The Minister of State for Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika, made this known in a statement by the Deputy Director, Press and Public Affairs, Ministry of Transportation, James Odaudu, on Monday in Abuja.
It would be recalled that the Federal Government had in September 19 announced the suspension of the planned commencement of operations of the nation’s national carrier, Nigeria Air, two months after it was launched in London.
Although, Sirika did not state the reason for the suspension, the Minister of Information of Culture, Lai Mohammed, had however said the project was suspended due to investor apathy.
Lai was quoted to have said, “If the understanding of government at the beginning was that the project might be self-financing or the project would be financed by investors and you think that such a project can no longer be sponsored by investors, either because they are not forthcoming or such venture can no longer be viable, the government is at the discretion to take a decision.”
But in a counter comment, Sirika had said “the national carrier project has an avalanche of well-grounded and ready investors.”
According to the statement, the address became necessary to clarify some of the issues, misinformation, allegations and opinions trending in the media in order to keep the public well informed on the status of the proposed national carrier prior to the suspension.
“It is in the light of this that the minister has decided to invite aviation stakeholders and members of the public to a Stakeholders Forum in Abuja on October 23.
“The interactive forum will, as usual, enable the ministry, stakeholders and interested members of the public to adequately address all issues associated with the national carrier project.
“This will involve airline operators, regulators in the aviation sector, prospective investors, the media practitioners, labour unions, aviation service providers, officials from the ministry of transportation and its agencies, as well as interested members of the public,’’ he said.
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