According to Keyamo, the move of the headquarters will spare Nigeria 500,000 naira that would have otherwise been spent on airline tickets for authority officials.
The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) headquarters were moved from Abuja to Lagos, and Festus Keyamo, the Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development, says he, not President Bola Tinubu, sanctioned the move, despite what the public claims. He clarified that the decision only impacts one of the nation’s seven aviation agencies and that once the instruction has been issued, it cannot be reversed.
Keyamo made this statement on Wednesday, January 31, 2024, during the Politics Today show on Channels Television.
The minister responded, “I take the decision; it’s a decision under the purview of a minister,” when asked if the president was aware of the intention to move the agency’s headquarters. He clarified that there were insufficient arrangements for the major executives, such as directors and the divisions under them, when his predecessor, Hadi Sirika, relocated the headquarters of the aviation agencies to Abuja in 2020.
Over 120 of the 132 employees at the headquarters, according to Keyamo, are in Lagos, while the directors are in Abuja without the support staff members they need. According to him, the move was essential given the operational and economic conditions of the present as well as the fact that the operations of the agency have not yet been digitised.
He clarified that this circumstance forces agency representatives to board planes from Abuja to Lagos on a regular basis in order to obtain a file signed.
“Every day, you see them flying to and from Abuja to sign a single file. Every day, they take off and land. They paid over half a billion naira for airline tickets in a single year. ₦450 million just for airline tickets,” he remarked.
According to him, the relocation of the headquarters will save Nigeria half a billion naira wasted on air tickets by officials of the agency.