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Home Sectors AVIATION Sirika: Nigeria Will Fare Better Without Foreign Airlines

Sirika: Nigeria Will Fare Better Without Foreign Airlines

Sirika: Nigeria Will Fare Better Without Foreign Airlines

Hadi Sirika, the Minister of Aviation, has stated that Nigeria would fare better without foreign airlines.

The minister made this comment as he reacted to the disclosed plan by Emirates Airline and British Airways to boycott Nigeria.

BizWatch Nigeria understands that the airlines had been agitating over $700 million of their funds trapped in the country.

On Monday, October 24, 2022, Governor Godwin Emefiele of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN); the Speaker of the House of Representatives Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila, and Sirika held an interactive session, during which they deliberated and sought a solution to the trapped funds.

Gbajabiamila had called for the meeting following a threat by the foreign airlines to stop flying Nigerian routes from Friday, October 28, 2022, if nothing was done by the government to resolve the backlog.

However, in response to the threats, Sirika said the President Muhammadu Buhari-led government has the capacity to contain and manage any challenge in the aviation sector.

“Nigeria under President Buhari has shown the capacity and audacity to stand up in difficult moments to do the right thing to help the country,” the minister stated.

Sirika recalled that when the Buhari administration rode into power in 2015, there were about $480 million blocked in Nigeria. “That year, we were in recession and revenues had dwindled,” he said.

According to the minister, Emefiele, then said that the country would either ‘earn or borrow it (forex)’. Gbajabiamila said at that moment, the government had not started borrowing, adding that Buhari asked him, Emefiele, and the then Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Kemi Adeosun, to resolve the problem which was done.


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