…urges Authorities to resolve previous concession issues
Posted by Sade Williams
Aviation Safety Round Table Initiative (ASRTI) , has cautioned the Federal government to ensure that the process of the concsessioning of airports in the country is transparently conducted.
While the group acknowledged the necessity for government to concession airport terminals in order to reduce financial burden on the Federal Government for airports infrastructure development management, it noted that the concession of the terminals should not just be a departure from the status quo but with an objective to deliberately drive regional competitive hubs as well as mega carriers that will operate in those hubs.
These views were part of a communique issued at the end of the Webinar session organised by the group on ‘ Nigerian airports concession: How far, so far’.
“The participants enjoined the Ministry of Aviation to ensure that the terminal concession process is transparently conducted in compliance with the extant laws and due process to avoid post-agreement controversies and rancour as previously experienced. In addition, the Government should, in its current concession plan consider the totality of all the 22 airport terminals.” , the communique reads.
It noted future that the the session was informed of the recruitment of a strategic Communication Consultant who is expected to disseminate important information on the concession process for the benefit of all stakeholders.
It therefore, urged the government to define and clarify what is to be concessioned within the airport.
“All existing legal, labour, and other complications arising from previous experiments Nigeria Airways, NAHCO, etc., should be conclusively resolved. Therefore, there is need for government to allay the fears of the unions and employees of Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) with regards to the planned concession. The process must be fair and transparent.
” The controversies surrounding the various concession agreements between FAAN and
the following: AIC Ltd., Bi-Courtney Aviation Services Limited, Maevis Ltd., Toll Plaza Operator and all other such agreements should be resolved as soon as possible by parties involved before moving on to sign new concession agreements in order not to discourage prospective investors”, the group cautioned.
According to ASRTI, it was also recommended that the concession be done with the objectives of protecting users’ interest through the provision of innovative and quality services by service providers as well as leveraging private sector funds amenable to modern technologies
to provide improved infrastructure comparable to global standards.
It was further recommended that Government should have minimal participation in airport’s terminal management and infrastructure development but should concern itself
primarily with aeronautical services and regulatory interventions and oversight.
The webinar also recommended that the proposal for a connected rail system designed
to ensure interoperability of the domestic and international terminals at the MMIA, Lagos be revisited to enhance passenger facilitation and air cargo management.
“The modest successes recorded in terminal infrastructure and services at the MMA2
should be improved upon and adopted as a strategy for development of other terminals
in the country.
“There is need for aviation authorities in Nigeria to understudy successful models of
terminal commercialisation and operation in other climes to gain deeper understanding
of airport concession and management to minimise controversies associated with such” , it added.