By Sade Williams
Rising from its 2016 Annual General Meeting and Elections held on January 11, 2017 at its Secretariat in Lagos, the Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON) has announced that it now has a new Executive Council in place to pilot the activities of the association for the next two years.
Sir Nogie Meggison, the Chief Executive Officer of Jedidiah Air Limited (JedAir) once again emerged as Chairman for a second term in office having served the association in this capacity on an initial first term while Alhaji Abdulmunaf Yunusa Sarina, Chairman of Azman Airlines was unanimously elected as Vice Chairman.
Capt. Chimara Imediegwu, Director of Flight Operations with First Nation Airways, was returned as the Financial Controller of the Association.
The new Exco will be expected to forge greater and robust advocacy for and on behalf of the association, continuously engage government constructively on critical operational and industry issues as well as drive unity and oneness among member airlines in an effort to promote their individual and collective interests.
While delivering his report of stewardship, Sir Nogie Meggison said: “In the last few years, AON has made rapid progress by speaking with one voice. Our Strength is in our number and staying together, as we have grown to be a strong force that we should be in the aviation sector. I would therefore like to appreciate you all for giving me the mandate to lead in the last three years and I thank you all for the support you have given to me during this time.”
Under the erstwhile and current Chairman’s first term in office, AON was able to make a number of milestone and unprecedented achievements.
These include successfully engaging government and getting the implementation of zero duty on aircraft and spare parts, securing forex allocation and getting aviation on the priority list, a functional Secretariat and Board Room, better and more cordial engagement with the Minister of State on Aviation on quarterly basis, a functional website as well as more respect and interaction with Labour Unions among others.
In another development, the Chairman of AON thanked the Federal Government and the Minister of State for Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, for appointing two of its members to serve as Chief Executive Officers of two very important parastatals. They include Capt. Fola Akinkuotu for the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) and Mr. Akin Olateru as Commissioner of the Accident Investigation Bureau.
Meggison noted that their appointment was quite encouraging and a display of government’s confidence in the ability and experience of these fine gentlemen to take the agencies to greater heights,
“I would like to also use this opportunity to congratulate two of our members that were recently appointed by the Federal Government to head two of the aviation parastatals. We congratulate them and wish them the very best,” he remarked.
Offering his acceptance speech after emerging as Chairman for a second term, Sir Meggison said: “It has been a privilege serving AON and I am very grateful for your support. I would like to use this opportunity to thank all the airlines that have been very active in facilitating our work at the Secretariat. May God Almighty continue to reward you all for your sacrifice.
I thank you all for coming and for making it a date with history today as we all continue to resolve to work together as a team in an effort to getting our voices heard and our desires met always so that our businesses can thrive, albeit in a tough economic time and a harsh business environment,” he added.