FG to name transaction advisers on airport concession

Minister of State for Aviation, Hadi SIrika.

The proposed concession of four major airports by the federal government will take shape in the next two weeks when government will name transaction advisers for the project.
Minister of State for Aviation Senator Hadi Sirika disclosed that four firms have already been selected while the transaction advisers would be announced in a fortnight.

The transaction advisers are a consortium of experts and economists, including representatives of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) that would drive the process of the concession.

The consortium will also have a legal firm which would review all previous concessions and examine 68 court cases generated by past concessions especially that of Bi-Courteny Aviation Service Limited (BASL).

Sirika dropped this hint at the second stakeholders’ forum held in Lagos with key stakeholders including heads of all aviation agencies, airline operators and unions in attendance.

Also, the government, he disclosed, would investigate what he called “orchestrated and manipulated” concessions and that those found wanting would be handed over to the anti-graft agency.

Airports being proposed to be given out to private concerns are those of Lagos, Abuja, Kano and Port Harcourt.
Aviation unions had voiced their opposition to the concession fearing the move could cause job losses.

Other stakeholders argue that previous concessions/privatisations should be looked into to guide the present one.

However, the minister stressed that government would be very transparent in the proposed concession in order to make it successful and hassle-free.

He said past concessions had largely been devoid of transparency with no proper planning or risk analysis carried out hence they became subjects of litigation.

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