• Friday, June 14, 2024
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BusinessDay

FG opens bid for national carrier next week

Hadi Sirika must be prosecuted for this affront

The federal government has announced that it will soon open a bid for the national carrier, Nigeria Air.

Hadi Sirika, minister of aviation, gave the hint in Abuja on Thursday, adding that the federal government would issue Requests-for-Proposal for the establishment of Nigeria Air next week.

A request for proposal is the process of requesting the bids to evaluate the feasibility, financial health, and bidders’ abilities to undertake the project.

Sirika said the government would issue requests for proposals to intending investors on March 8, 2022.

“The transaction adviser is going to request for proposals next week Monday. The government will own five percent, Nigerians will own 46 percent, and the international partners’ airlines will take 49 percent shares,” he said.

“We will give them some weeks to respond to the request, then we will announce the winning bidder.

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“However, in the interim, because the government intends to own only five percent of the airline shares, we are going to go ahead with the AOC (Air Operator Certificate), which has commenced since.

“I believe that by April, we should be able to have our AOC ready, which means, we are ready to start. And once the AOC is in our hands, the offices are secured, the interim board is being constituted, and when they finish signing the contract, we will announce who they are,” Sirika said.

He noted that the bidders are temporarily called interim board members and should take over by July.

“Currently, they are called interim because they will hold the airline on an interim basis up to the time the investors will come and take over.

“They are noble people, some are Nigerians, some are not. I think there are about nine of them running the airline and they will begin operations between now and July.

“Within the period, Nigeria Air would run Lagos and Abuja, and as the situation demands, they may extend to Port Harcourt and other parts of the country.”