AMCON Critical to Aero’s Rebirth, Return to Viability-Aero CEO

By Peter OBIORA InvestAdvocate

Lagos (INVESTADVOCATE)- Captain Ado Sanusi, the managing director (MD) and CEO of Aero Contractors on Friday at the Roll-Out of the First Successfully conducted Boeing 737-500 C-Check in Nigeria said the Asset Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) under its MD Ahmed Kuru played critical roles that have culminated with the airline being able to sustain its operations and slowly returning to viability.

“Without the support of AMCON, some tough decisions would have never being taken and we wouldn’t have gathered here today. For his personal and professional support, Aero expresses gratitude to AMCON,” Sanusi said.

According to him, today’s occasion proves that with good policies, smart management, effective oversight and professional dedication by staff, hard work gets rewarded and companies dedicated to public services can be revived from the brink of collapse.

He also praised the Honourable Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika as part of the rebirth of Aero who insisted that despite the challenges the airline must continue operating as staff must continue having an employment with the company.

“This set the pace towards concerted efforts of ensuring that Aero sustained operations so as to serve the public and keep staff employed. For showing exemplary leadership Sir, we at Aero say Thank you,” the CEO of Aero added.

Captain Sanusi said conducting aircraft C-Check in Nigeria is a huge milestone for the aviation sector which all stakeholders recognize. “For us in Aero, there were several challenging moments. Thankfully, our Team of Engineers & Technicians persisted and surmounted the challenges to make today possible. Permit me to mention here that this certification of Aero to conduct C-Checks in Nigeria seamlessly dovetails into the Ease of Doing Business Policy of the present administration,” he affirmed.

He further affirmed in the course of conducting the C-Check, Aero suffered avoidable delays with Customs Clearance of specially imported tools required for the maintenance.

Captain Sanusi commended S.A.A. Technique & AJW Group Aero technical partners for their commitment in adding immense technical value to the company’s Maintenance Department. “Both companies went far beyond the Terms of the MoU we signed on this project and worked with our Team like a family,” he noted.

Aero hereby invites airlines to conduct their C-Checks for B737 Classics with the company bearing in mind the tangible deliverables to be derived from patronizing Aero which include saving foreign exchange, getting a quicker aircraft turn-around time, enriching Nigerian technical expertise and knowledge base and strengthening the Nigerian aviation sector as the regional and sub-regional hub for aviation activities.

The Aero CEO revealed that that the airline has applied to be granted Free Trade Zone status at the Nigerian Export Processing Zones Authority (NEPZA). “We are hoping that granting us the status shall be expedited in the first quarter of 2018 as it would ease our maintenance turn-around time which is key to building customer confidence in patronizing Aero for its C-Check maintenance,” he said.

On his part, Kuru, represented by Aminu Ismail, Executive Director, AMCON  the Roll Out of the First Successful Conduct of a Boeing 737-500 series C-Check in the country justifies AMCON’s resolve and commitment towards the development and stabilisation of our challenged Aviation sector.

“We are all living witnesses to the controversies that have trailed AMCONs intervention in the Aviation sector particularly for those who did not really understand AMCON’s mandate as a resolution and stabilisation vehicle, and the good intentions of both the Federal Government and AMCON in the sector,” he said.

According to him, at AMCON Aviation is not just a critical sector but also a strategic and core component of any economy or country that wants to compete on the global scale. “If Nigeria must compete, our only option is to have a sustainable, vibrant and dependable Aviation sector,” he noted.

Ismail said these interventions in Aero and indeed all other airlines in the country, was for the Corporation a national assignment, geared towards both AMCON’s resolution objective and the need to help in rebuilding the Nigerian economy.

“As a recovery Agency of the Federal Government, it was not for us an option to stand aloof and watch while airlines such as Aero, with its rich history and others be grounded as a result of challenges in management and governance, plus accumulated debt obligations,” he added.

The ED at AMCON said its important to underscore the fact that that Aero Contractors’ certification to conduct the C-Checks for Boeing 737-500 series locally is a boom for the industry because it would save millions of dollars that Nigerian Airlines and not just Aero, spend outside this country on facilities such as this.

He affirmed its AMCON’s belief that Aero’s maintenance facility will achieve huge savings for operators even from other neighbouring African countries, thereby attracting the much needed funds that is required to strengthen our economy. “This success can be replicated across other industries in Nigeria.  I strongly believe that more can be done if we imbibe good corporate governance, hold management accountable, and have responsive regulators,” he noted.

Ismail solicited the support for Aero MRO by all stakeholders, particularly the relevant Aviation Regulatory Bodies, towards ensuring that this seed that has been planted is allowed to grow, in our collective interest as Nigeria and Nigerians.

“We cannot continue to allow capital flight of our scarce foreign exchange towards paying for services that are available in Nigeria and would provide a source of employment for our people. To this end a directive to other airlines towards the use of this facility at least to the extent of its capabilities and certifications, would go along way towards ensuring the growth of the Aero MRO into being certified for other Aircrafts types,” he said.