The management of Arik Airline has exonerated itself from FAAN’s allegation of N1.2 billion. Arik’s Public Relations and Communications Manager, Mr. Ola Adebanji sent ENCOMIUM Weekly an electronic mail on Monday, April 27, 2015 to clarify issues arising from their face-off with FAAN.
Ola Adebanji also explained why an Owerri-Lagos Arik flight was cancelled on the evening of Sunday, April 26, 2015.
“The issue with FAAN has been resolved. The Honourable Minister of Aviation invited both parties to a meeting in Abuja on Friday (April 24, 2015).
He stated in an earlier press statement we issued on Thursday (April 23) that the debt figure by the agency is fictitious and malicious. In 2014 alone, Arik Air paid FAAN about N4b for parking and landing fees, rent, passenger service charge and fuel surcharge.
Arik Air does not owe FAAN N1.2b as claimed since the agency’s charges are paid in advance (pay-as-you-go basis). This has been the practice for over two years when all the aviation agencies introduced pay-as-you-go for their services. The bogus debt claim by FAAN is therefore unacceptable to Arik Air.
The Honourable Minister of Aviation, Chief Osita Chidoka had earlier stepped into the lingering debt issue between FAAN and Arik Air and had directed that a firm of auditors be engaged to reconcile the books. This process has not been concluded before the last action by FAAN.
On the Owerri-Lagos flight, the flight was canceled due to scarcity of aviation fuel in Lagos. We have been experiencing short supply of the product in Lagos since Friday and this is affecting on our operations.”