Senate declines bailout for aviation sector

The Senate yesterday rejected proposal to give bailout fund to airline operators in the country.

Moving a motion tagged: “The looming crisis in the Nigerian aviation industry,” Senator Samuel Anyanwu (PDP, Imo) said there was need for the federal government to grant the bailout fund to airline operators.

He said that the aviation sector was gasping for survival, adding that the current economic recession had worsened the situation.

“A couple of weeks ago, Aero contractors, Medview , First Nation, Arik Air and some others, airlines suspended their operations as a result of poor economic activities and other surrounding factors affecting the industry, ” he said.

When the Senate President, Bukola Saraki, raised a question on the bailout, the senators voted against it.

Speaking against the bailout, Senator Ibrahim Gobir (APC, Sokoto) said that the airline operators should rather seek for soft loan from financial institutions, arguing that the N350billion bailout fund previously given to the sector was not properly utilised.

The Senate, however, mandated its committee on aviation to liaise with the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) to look into problems facing the industry.