The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has expressed its satisfaction over the utilisation of the Federal Government’s Power and Aviation Intervention Fund (PAIF) by one the fund’s beneficiaries, Arik Air.
The CBN officials were accompanied on an assessment tour of Arik’s facilities by the Bank of Industry (BoI) officials who are managers of the N300 billion disbursed by the CBN as intervention funds to the power and aviation sectors to help refinance facilities earlier taken by the sector operators from commercial banks.
The CBN and BoI delegation was led by the Deputy Director Development Finance Department of CBN, Uji Amedu, who disclosed that the assessment visit was aimed at supporting the Participating Commercial Banks to recover their monies from the borrowing companies.
“We are here to inspect Arik’s facility to ascertain that they have actually made use of the intervention fund (N15 billion) judiciously, and from what we have seen on ground today we are able to say that Arik has really put the money to good use,” he said.
The delegation was led on an inspection tour of the facility by the company’s Associate Vice President Operation Control Centre, Ralph Henschen, who conducted them through the flight dispatch centre where he disclosed that the staff members manning the centre were regularly sent on training in America in addition to having obtained Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) licenses.
He said that some of the flights’ delay constraints which were not favourable to business were due to lack of basic navigational facilities in some major Nigerian airports.
“The weather is not really the problem because in Europe and America a pilot can be assisted remotely to land a plane even in very poor visibility because of the use of modern sophisticated equipment,” he said.
He disclosed that the airline has proposed to do some expansion of its facilities to accommodate more aircrafts and newer technologies just like what is obtained in America, Europe and Dubai. “We are already on course to complete these facility expansions by next year when we shall mark our 7th year anniversary,” he enthused.