The Nigerian Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA) has given its backing to the Federal Government’s campaign against corruption and impunity in the aviation industry.
The association made this known in a statement signed by its President, Mr Victor Eyaru, which was obtained by the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday in Lagos.
The statement said the impunity and corrupt practices which had bedeviled the sector for several years must be curbed for Nigeria to become an aviation hub.
It commended the recent arrest of some top officials of the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) by operatives of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) over alleged corrupt practices.
According to the statement, the anti-graft agency should ensure that all monies allegedly siphoned by the suspects involved are recovered and returned to the coffers of NAMA.
“Thereafter, the guilty should be punished according to the law so as to serve as deterrent to others,” it added.
The statement also urged the EFCC to extend the probe into some failed projects executed by NAMA such as the Total VHF Coverage of Nigeria as well as other aviation agencies.
It advised the government to immediately appoint, in acting capacity, a very competent person as Managing Director of NAMA, pending the conclusion of investigation of the embattled Managing Director, Mr Ibrahim Abdulsalam.
The statement said: “This is to stem the ongoing leadership crisis due to appointment of two persons as Acting Managing Director within a week and in the interest of air safety.
“NAMA is a very strategic agency that should not be headed by anyone without both technical knowledge and proven administrative expertise in Air Navigation Service Provision (ANSP) under whatever circumstance.
“This is to avoid any costly decision that could compromise air safety and spell disaster for the whole country.”