Relocating FAAN To Lagos Will Save Govt N943m – Keyamo

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By Emmanuel Obisue

Nigeria’s Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development, Festus Keyamo, has revealed that the decision to relocate the Head Office of the Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria, FAAN from Abuja to Lagos would save the government up to N943 million.

Speaking to Journalists in Abuja at the sidelines of the 10th edition of the Aviation Workers’ Week & Award on Friday, the minister said he expects that by now, “our brothers from some parts of the country would understand. I think it was just that they did not understand what we were trying to do before”. “I am sure you saw my interview recently where I explained the situation thoroughly,” he added.

“In fact, I had to do the figures, which I told the management of FAAN to give to us, that in tickets alone we paid about more than N450 Million because of the lack of coordination, lack of being in one decision-making place. And in Basic Traveling Allowances (BTAs) alone, we paid about N493 million in 2023 alone, making nearly N1 billion that we paid, just because all the decision-makers cannot be in one place,” Keyamo added.

The minister explained that the staff of FAAN “don’t have to be shuttling back and forth carrying files to and from Abuja. They don’t have to do that. I only need to see the Managing Director here when I need her. The MD will only come to Abuja on the invitation of the Minister to brief him on the issues going on”.

Keyamo also allayed fears that the recent fall of the Naira to the Dollar is no indication that prices of local air tickets will rise. He said all local carriers need to do is to be more competitive across foreign routes, adding that the government is doing all it can to “force down prices” of air fares.

Nigerian Pilot reports that the Naira hit an all-time high of N1500 per $1 few days ago.

“We’ll see what happens. I don’t want to predict gloom or doom as the case may be.

“We need to go out of the country to get aircraft for our local operators that they can use to compete in those routes that our BASA have allowed us to compete in,” he said.

“For example, if British Airways has 14 slots coming into Nigeria every week, we should have our local airlines being able to reciprocate 14 slots going in the UK weekly,” he added.

Highlighting on the theme: ‘Worker as Strategic Partners in Achieving the Aviation Road Map’, Keyamo agreed that the Aviation workforce remains critical to achieving his 5-point Aviation Road Map.

Earlier is his Welcome Address, Comrade Hector Nnadi, Chairman of the Joint Consultative & Negotiation Council, JCNC of the Aviation Ministry, assured of Workers’ unalloyed support towards achieving the Aviation Road Map.