The gale of tsunami in the aviation industry has hit the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) with the immediate sack of all its 10 directors.
The affected staff are the director of finance and accounts, Alhaji Salawu Ozigi, director of aerodrome and airspace standards, Dr. Joyce Nkemakolam, director of administration, Barrister Aba Ejembi, director of licencing, Mr. Emmanuel Ogunbami and director of operations and training, Capt. Abdullahi Maikano Sidi.
The sack also consumed the director of consumer protection, Alhaji Adamu Abdullahi, director of airworthiness and former acting director general of NCAA, Mr. Benedict Adeyileka, director of air transport regulation, Mr. Justus Wariya, , director of general aviation, Capt. Ayodele Sasegbon and director of human resources, Mr. Austin-Amadi Ifeanyi.
The affected directors were immediately ordered to handover to the most senior person in their various directorates who, in the meantime, will take charge of the running of the directorates.
In a telephone conversation, the spokesman for NCAA, Mr. Sam Adurogboye who confirmed the development simply said he was aware of the sack adding that they were all political appointees.
“It is true that all the directors have been disengaged, but I don’t have details of their disengagement,” he said.
It was learnt that NCAA’s director general, Capt. Muhtar Usman had told the affected directors of their disengagement at a meeting he convened in his office on Thursday.
News Gazette recalls that some of the directors where around on Thursday when the acting president, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo paid an uscheduled visit to the international wing of the Murtala Muhammed Airport.
After the tour, it was gathered that Muhtar summoned them to a meeting in his office where he broke the news to the erstwhile directors who a source said looked distraught when they came out of the meeting.
Prior to the purge in NCAA, the federal government sacked about 21 senior officials of the FAAN last October. They included directors, general managers and deputy general managers.
Some general managers alleged to have been improperly promoted were demoted. Some who were on Grade Level 16 and 17 were downgraded to Grade Levels 10, 12 and 14. An acting director was demoted to Grade Level 10 and redeployed to another department.
It would also be recalled that on January 9, 2017, the federal government sacked the chief executives of the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET), Nigerian College of Aviation Technology (NCAT), Zaria and Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) of their appointments.
The former director general of NCAA, Capt. Fola Akinkuotu took over from Mr. Emma Anasi as the managing director of NAMA; Prof. Sani Abubakar Mashi replaced Dr. Anthony Anuforom as the director general of NIMET, Capt. Abdulsalam Mohammed succeeded Capt. Samuel Caulcrick as the rector of NCAT while Mr. Akinola Olateru replaced Dr. Felix Abali as commissioner of AIB.
Muhtar is one of the two old chief executives who have survived the purge in aviation industry which began in 2016. The other is the managing director of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Mr. Saleh Dunoma.