Senate asks FG to save aviation sector

The Senate on Thursday expressed concern over the parlous state of the Aviation sector in the country, adding that the Federal Government must rise up to the challenge in the sector.

The lawmakers, who adopted a motion by Senator Dino Melaye on the travails of Aviation sector in the country, said that trends were worrisome.

The lawmakers said that the continuous exit of foreign airlines from Nigeria and suspension of flight operations by others airlines, must be checked, adding that if the trend was not checked, it could further compound the financial and transportation problems in the country.

The lawmakers urged the Federal Government to ensure that airlines operating in the country were not allowed to hike fares indiscriminately.

The above resolutions were sequel to the adoption of Senator Dino Melaye, who moved a motion in which he lamented what he described as emerging challenges in the Aviation sector.

He said that in recent times, foreign airlines including United Air Emirates and Kenyan Airlines have either suspended their operations or withdrawn their services.

According to him, the crisis rocking Aviation sector was capable of making life more difficult for ordinary Nigerians whom he said had been grappling with the adverse effects of the current economic recession.

Senate Minority Leader, Godswill Akpabio, who spoke in favour of the motion, blamed the current situation on the monetary policies of the government, adding that any policy that is not predicated on security and welfare of the people was a failure.

He warned that the development was not only dangerous to the people, but will also cause loss of jobs and instability as according to him, organisations such as Julius Berger and Exxon Mobil had laid off over 10,000 employees in recent times.

The senate, in adopting the motion asked the Federal Government to x-ray the currency management system in the country, adding that the government must stop further divestments and business failures in order to save Nigerian workers and families.

The senate also frowned at the propensity of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) to collect charges in foreign currency, adding that it must henceforth, denominate all local charges in local currency.

While wrapping up the debate on the motion, Senate President Bukola Saraki asked the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) to put in place measures to stabilise the Naira and forestall further suspension of operations in the Aviation sector.