Presidency raises task force on multiple taxation of airlines
The Federal Government yesterday inaugurated a presidential task force to check payment of multiple charges by airlines among other regulatory issues raised by operators.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, who gave a directive in that regard, also mandated the panel to look into the state of infrastructure at the airports as well as Bilateral Air Service Agreements (BASAs)
The task force, headed by the Minister of State for Aviation, Hadi Sirika, equally has the Special Adviser to the President on Economic matters, Director General, Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Managing Directors of Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) as members.
The panel’s membership also includes a nominee of Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON), Captain Bogie Maggisson; Allen Onyema; Alhaji Kashim Shetima; Captain Mohammed Joji; Department of Air Transport Management and a representative of International Air Transport Association (IATA).
Raising the panel, Sirika charged the members to look at the issues dispassionately and come up with sustainable solutions.
He admitted that since his assumption of office, there had been many complaints and a good number of issues demanding unraveling.
Sirika said: “We did the best we could to solve some of them, and indeed we solved many. And we held stakeholders’ meetings and interfaced with stakeholders, including, AON, International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), IATA individually.”
He noted that the issues to be x-rayed had been tabled before the Vice President during the period he acted as President.
Stating that this was not the first panel to be raised to address challenges in the aviation industry, Sirika added: “Some years ago, a committee was set up for a similar purpose with similar terms of reference and a report was produced.”
He urged the committee to be patriotic with the assignment at hand so that the issues could be well treated once and for all.
“This government takes every single assignment very seriously. It is our intention to give the best of our services within this environment that we have been trying to upgrade, “ the minister added.
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