Tuesday, 10 January 2017

FG appoints heads of 4 agencies in the aviation sector

The Federal Government yesterday announced appointments of heads of four agencies in the aviation sector.
A statement by Alhaji Sabiu Zakari, the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Transportation on behalf of the Minister of State (Aviation) Senator Hadi Sirika announced Capt. Fola C. Akinkuotu as the new Managing Director, Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA). 

Captain Akinkuotu is a transport pilot, flight and aircraft maintenance engineer, airline chief executive and a trained aviation industry regulator.
The statement also named Professor Sani Abubakar Mashi, as the new Director-General, Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMeT). He is a Professor of geography with specialty in environmental application of remote sensing. Mashi is currently a Deputy Vice Chancellor at the University of Abuja
Capt. Abdulsalam Mohammed has also been appointed as the Rector of the Nigerian College of Aviation Technology (NCAT) Zaria.
An alumnus of the College, Capt. Mohammed is a renowned civil aviation trainer and examiner with accreditation by the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) and the Federal Civil Aviation Administration. Engr. Akinola Olateru is the new Commissioner, Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB). He is an engineer of international repute; Olateru is a trained Air accident manager and certified safety officer with aircraft maintenance engineering licenses in Nigeria, USA and the United Kingdom.
The new appointments followed the removal of Dr. Anthony Anuforom (NiMET), Capt. Samuel Caulcrick (NCAT), Mr. Felix Abali (AIB) and Mr. Emmanuel Anasi (NAMA)
Our correspondent gathered that the minister had briefed the affected agency heads Friday last week of the decision to relieve them of their appointments. 
The reasons for their sack is not immediately clear but industry sources say, it could be a routine change of agency heads, particularly those appointed by the last government, so the government of the day can appoint its candidates. 
There has also been no public scandal on the affected heads. Though last year, Transparency Initiative wrote a petition to President Muhammadu Buhari against NCAT Rector over contract splitting and contracts awards. Following the series of allegations, the Office of the Accountant General of the Federation commissioned an enquiry into NCAT’s financial transactions and contract awards.
The report of the investigation on the reports of the Inspectorate Department of OAGF on the 2014 and 2015 accounts of NCAT Zaria was signed on 22 September 2016 by the trio of Dr. M.U. Kadiri, deputy director, Accounts, Adegoke Adewale, deputy director, Internal Audit and Vandu John deputy director Finance/Audit. The report largely cleared the NCAT rector of wrong doing.
DG NiMet has eight months to leave office as his second tenure expires August 2017; Acting MD NAMA is also retiring as a civil servant so if removed, he will go back as a director before retirement; while the Rector NCAT and Commissioner of AIB have both served 2 years and 10 months into their first tenure.
The two CEOs that may have been spared in the sector are the MD/CEO, Federal Airports Authority (FAAN) Engr. Salleh Dunoma and the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Capt. Muhtar Shaibu Usman.

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