Worry as NCAA acting DG tenure expires

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There is growing tension among staff and management of the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) and the Ministry of Aviation and Aerospace Development regarding the appointment of a substantive director-general for the aviation regulatory agency.

The tension has persisted for six months due to a leadership dispute between Captain Musa Nuhu and Captain Chris Najomo. Captain Musa Nuhu, appointed by former President Muhammadu Buhari in 2019, was suspended in December 2023 over alleged corrupt practices. His successor, Captain Chris Najomo, was appointed as acting DG by President Bola Tinubu in January 2024.

Captain Nuhu, a pilot, safety expert, quality assurance lead auditor, and artificial intelligence expert, previously served as Nigeria’s Permanent Representative to the International Civil Aviation Organisation. His career includes roles at the defunct Nigeria Airways, Aero Contractors, and Petrowest. He holds an MSc in Aviation Business from Concordia University and a Diploma in Aviation Safety from the University of Southern California. Nuhu also served in the Presidential Air Fleet as a captain and safety officer.

The Ministry of Aviation and Aerospace Development announced Nuhu’s suspension due to alleged corrupt practices and stated that he would be handed over to the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) for further investigation. However, six months later, there has been no public update on the investigation. Efforts to obtain information from EFCC spokesperson Dele Oyewale have been unsuccessful.

A senior NCAA staff member, speaking anonymously, expressed doubt about the corruption allegations against Nuhu, suggesting the issue might not be as straightforward as presented. This uncertainty and lack of transparency have fueled unrest within the NCAA and the Ministry.

As the acting tenure of Captain Najomo reaches its conclusion, the decision on who will permanently lead the NCAA remains unresolved, adding to the disquiet and speculation within the aviation sector.

Source: Punch

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