The Aviation Ministry has debunked claims that it unilaterally jerked up the NCAA budget for the procurement of operational vehicles from N240 million to N643 million, saying “Nothing can be further from the truth”.
The Aviation Minister – Stella Oduah’s spokesperson, Mr. Joe Obi while debunking the claims purportedly made by Mr. Joyce D. Nkemakolam, the Director of Aerodrome and Airspace Standards (DAS) and former acting Director General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) at the time of the transaction, said at no point in time during the public hearing by the House of Representative on Thursday did Nkemakolam make any statement as suggested in media reports indicting the Ministry.
“It is shocking that the ‘revelation’ was said to have been made during Thursday’s OPEN Public Hearing by the House Committee on Aviation into the circumstances surrounding the purchase of security vehicles by the NCAA”, Obi said.
“For the avoidance of doubt, we hasten to declare that throughout the duration of the hearing, there was never a time Mr. Nkemakolam, who made the presentation on behalf of the NCAA, or any other official of the agency for that matter, said the Ministry of Aviation increased or jerked up the agency’s budget,” Obi added.
The minister’s aide, who decried the way Nkemakolam’s statements at the public hearing had been twisted to indict the ministry, challenged “anyone with evidence supporting the statement credited to Nkemakolam to the effect that the ministry jerked up the agency’s budget to come forward with such.”