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COVID-19: Minister tasks aviation stakeholders on adaptation


Hadi Sirika

The Minister of Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika, has urged aviation stakeholders to devise means by which the sector would adapt and operate efficiently with COVID-19 pandemic.

Sirika made the call in a statement by the Director of Public Affairs in the Ministry, James Odaudu, on Tuesday in Abuja.

He spoke at the opening of a four-day capacity building retreat for senior management staff of the ministry and its Parastatals in Uyo.

According to the minister, COVID-19 pandemic might linger for a while but the sector will not derail from the implementation of the roadmap being pursued by the ministry.

“The aviation sector in 2020, is the worst affected by the pandemic. This happened at a time when the sector in 2019, becomes the fastest-growing sector of the Nigerian economy.

“ This actually signifies that our modest effort and roadmap are not only in the right direction but yielding the right results.

“I noticed that included in the retreat objectives is a discussion on issues and challenges on the implementation of the aviation roadmap.

“I will urge the retreat to treat and dissect the aviation sector roadmap to digest its content and facilitate its implementation,” the minister said.

He appealed to participants to come up with a framework for improving the relationship between the ministry and its agencies to the level of achieving high-level implementation of the roadmap and to smooth the inter-agency relationship.

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Speaking, The Chairman, Savannah Centre for Development and Training, Malam Abidu Yazid, observed that there was a need for partnership and acquisition of knowledge for the industry to succeed.

Yazid, facilitator at the retreat said synergy was key to the realisation of objectives while collectively drove policies.

He noted that the aviation sector was an industry where symbiosis ought to be welcome.

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He commended Sirika for leading the sector from the front by not shying away from taking responsibilities and embarking on projects and programmes for the ultimate benefit of the industry.

Earlier in his welcome remark, Mr Hassan Musa Permanent, Secretary of the Ministry said aviation was a very peculiar sector which was subjected to international regulation and audit.

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Musa said that the retreat was organised to create the synergy that would facilitate the realisation of the objectives of the aviation roadmap, which, on its own, was geared toward the overall development of the sector.