From Suleiman Idris, Lagos
The alleged move to persuade the presidency to install a non-industry professional to head the aviation ministry is generating ripples among stakeholders.
It was gathered in Lagos Monday that underground moves by some industry players to thwart its proposal for the appointment of a technocrat as the next aviation minister, the joint aviation unions
and associations insisted its stand on it agitation for a professional minister.
The aviation unions comprising : Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria( ATSSSAN), National Union of Air Transport Employees ( NUATE ), National Association of Aircraft Pilots and Engineers ( NAAPE), National Association of Air Traffic Controllers ( NATCA), National Air Traffic Association of Nigeria ( NACAN), Nigeria Professional Pilots , Aviation Round table and the Airline Operators of Nigeria ( AON), said that its position that an industry technocrat be appointed the next aviation minister has not changed.
According to the convener of the stakeholders meeting, Captain Nogie Meggison, it is constrained to restate this position on account of feelers emanating from some circles that some persons are capitalizing on the open letter sent to President Goodluck Jonathan to appoint a technocrat as minister to lobby for themselves.
He said it has come to the notice of stakeholders that some persons were using some experts to make case for themselves as against the collective position.
Meggison said as much as stakeholders have resolved that a technocrat should be appointed as aviation minister, but not some industry players or head of aviation agencies that have misled previous aviation ministers, who are using their positions to lobby for the position of aviation minister, without the requisite capacity and track record for the position.
Meggison said “one of the major reasons why industry players need a technocrat as the next aviation minister is to rescue the industry from its current state, where certain self-centered elements without pedigree and track record want to continue to hijack the industry. A clear situation is where the industry finds itself today where such people are now in Abuja lobbying to be the next minister of aviation.
The appointment of a technocrat will be able see through their selfish motives to enable him or her decipher the grain from the chaff”