• Sunday, June 16, 2024
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Airspace management agency seeks reversal of 50% revenue deduction

Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA)

The Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) says it is currently facing significant financial constraints due to the implementation of a 50 percent revenue deduction.

NAMA says the deduction is detrimental to airspace safety since it has severely impacted its revenue, cutting it by more than half at a time when the need for infrastructure and personnel development is growing.

“The safety of our airspace is paramount, and the current financial model is unsustainable.The 50 percent revenue deduction hinders our ability to maintain and upgrade critical infrastructure, such as our obsolete surveillance systems, which are over a decade old and urgently need replacement.

“Without adequate funding, we can not meet the high costs of procuring and maintaining essential equipment or ensuring the continuous training of our technical staff, which is vital for maintaining safety standards,” Farouk Ahmed Umar, managing director/chief executive, NAMA said in a statement.

Umar stated that it is crucial to understand that NAMA operates on the principle of cost recovery, as recommended by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO).

He said this means that all charges are solely meant to be for the recovery of equipment and other costs incurred in service provision.

“The current revenue-sharing formula allocates only 22 percent of the five percent airfare, contract, charter, and cargo sales charges to NAMA, despite our significant capital investment needs.Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority with less responsibilities as it stands currently is allocated 56 percent while the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency, with all its responsibilities, gets 22 percent.

“This formula is skewed against NAMA in spite of the huge capital requirement of its investment, jeopardizing our ability to meet both national and international obligations,” the NAMA MD explained.

He said restoring the full revenue allocation to NAMA is quite essential, adding that doing so will enable NAMA address the critical needs of its infrastructure, enhance operational efficiency, and ensure the continuous training of its safety-critical personnel.

“With adequate funding, we can fulfil our mandate to provide safe and reliable air navigation services across Nigeria’s airspace.

“By reversing the 50 percent revenue deduction, we can significantly enhance air safety, ensuring that Nigeria’s skies remain safe and maintain high safety standards,” Umar said.

He urged all stakeholders to support this necessary change for the future of the aviation sector and the safety of the flying public.

“At this junction, I find it expedient to remind our political leaders that the entire aviation system is about safety as it remains sacrosanct owing to the fact that there is no parking space in the sky. Safety procedures and protocols must be prepared and strictly adhered to while on the ground,” he added.