Arik Air Take Over: We Saw It Coming —ART

* ART President, Mr Gbenga Olowo * Pix Source : National Mirror

Only yesterday; February 9,2017, the Assets Management Corporation of Nigeria(AMCON) took over the operations of Arik Air over indebtedness put at N135 billion and appointed a Receiver Manager, Mr Opasanya Oluseye(SAN) and Capt Ilegbodu,as Technical Consultant to the Receiver Manager. Though, the development came as a surprise to  many stakeholders except the Aviation Round Table ,who said categorically that it saw it coming.

Below is ART’s  Press Statement

We all saw it coming to Arik and may be others more than a year ago. ART Q1 breakfast meeting in 2016 appraised the very poor situation of Nigerian Airlines and rose with unambiguous communique on the way forward. This is still available on artng.org.

Treating the Arik case in isolation will be to trivialize the magnitude of the problem.  Going back to almost 40 years, Government airline Nigeria Airways failed, Pioneer Private airlines Okada, Kabo, etc failed,  3rd generation ADC, Bellview, Chachangi, Sosoliso, etc failed, 4th generation Richard Branson Virgin Nigeria, Air Nigeria, etc failed. Believe me, given the same Nigeria operating environment the National carrier yet to be born will fail.

Essentially it is a Nigerian business environmental factor. Business and Government are permanently at variance. Cost is permanently higher than Income. Tax overburden and infrastructural deficit erodes revenue steadily. Gazetted policies that will enhance performance are not implemented. Credit is not in the Nigeria business dictionary. Yet Aviation is prone to the most minute situation in the economy ranging from weather to politics, reckless holidays, etc.

Needless to say that lack of will to do things right by leadership is the undoing of Nigeria and ditto Nigerian Airlines & businesses. It is on record that former Governor Tunde Fasola delivered in Lagos; but alas!, what has happened to power in 2 years that he secured federal might?

That is the real issue. It is a fundamental problem that needed surgical operation.

Gbenga Olowo

ART President

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