The minister of state for aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika has announced the federal government’s approval of N45 billion severance package for former staff of the defunct Nigeria Airways.
Speaking in Abuja on Wednesday September 20 after the weekly federal executive council (FEC) meeting, Sirika the minister of finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, had been instructed to put the machinery in place for payment of the workers.
Consequently, he said the ministry had begun to put modalities in place for the payment of the retirees, regretting that some of the workers had lost their lives in the last 20 years while waiting for their entitlement.
“Governments, in the past, decided just to liquidate Nigeria Airways without tending to the issue of the entitlements of the workers and they have been struggling to get that paid. We came in and took it very seriously.
“I’m happy to announce that Mr. President has approved N45 billion which has been confirmed to be the entitlements of these workers and Ministry of Finance has been instructed to pay the money. The ministry wrote to me last week that they have received the instruction to pay these workers, and therefore, they are setting up the modalities to pay.
“You should know it won’t be paid through my ministry before somebody will say I take some of it. It will be paid by finance through a process, and that process will commence very soon,’’ he said.
Commenting on airport certification, Sirika said for the first time in the history of aviation in Nigeria, the Lagos Airport had been certified in accordance with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) laid down procedure that airport must attain certain standards of operation within the scope of international aviation safety system.
He expressed optimism that before the end of the year, Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, would also be certified.
Sirika also disclosed that the Nigerian Metrological Agency (NiMet) was also certified by the International Standards Organisation (ISO) for conforming to ISO 2015 standard.