Failure of airlines to cooperate, square pegs in round holes bane of aviation growth…Utomi

From left Asiwaju Olanrewaju Jim-Kamal, NNPP Gubernatorial candidate in Lagos State; Mr Andrew Okunuga, former MD, Nigerian Airways; Professor Pat Utomi, founder, Centre for Value in Leadership; Dr Gbenga Olowo, President, ASRTI/ART Network; Professor Anthony Kila, Professor of Strategy and Development and Professor Egwukhe Johnson, Professor of Business Administration, Babcock University, Ilishan-Remo, Ogun State during the ASRTI/ART Network Business Breakfast meeting 2023

Renowned economist and businessman, Prof. Pat Utomi says lack of cooperation among airlines, bureaucracy, appointment of incompetent people to lead government agencies are the bane of Nigeria’s aviation industry.

Speaking at the first Business Breakfast Meeting of the Aviation Safety RoundTable Initiative in Lagos, Prof. Utomi emphasised that until the industry organises itself and works cooperatively, its growth will remain stunted.

Prof. Pat Utomi who spoke on the theme ‘Aviation in Nigeria Beyond 2023 General Elections, Challenges and Prospects’, said, there is no Nigerian aviation, as aviation is a global business with same standards and recommended practices.

He said airline operators must cooperate even if they are competing, adding that, they must learn to work together to be able to offer better services.

Prof. Utomi stressed that the linkages and interface in the system must be seamless and people should be held accountable to attain the growth and development which stakeholders desire.

“We need to de-civil servicized, it is civil service, mistake is a very important thing, when you make the same mistake again something is wrong with you, you make it a third time, you should be executed”.

President, Aviation Safety RoundTable Initiative, Dr. Gbenga Olowo while giving a score card of the present administration’s performance in the aviation with regard to its set objectives said little had been achieved.
He however, applauded the sustenance of professionalism and good safety record.

“National carrier was not born, National maintenance and repair organization was neither here not there, FAAN airport concessioning, we recommended how to do it but they done it their own way, it was not done”.

Other speakers at the meeting, Professors, Anthony Kila, Kayode Soremikun and Johnson Egwakhe said though there had not been a quantum leap in governmental intervention, they suggested among other things, the need for government to focus more on regulation and leave the business to the private sector to drive.

“We have to learn not to be allergic to the truth, we most learn to live with facts, the fact is, this is where we are, we haven’t done a lot in the past eight years. Resources are daily being taken away without a corresponding input and we except the economy to get better. Let investors and or the entrepreneurs wake up so that the forces of the market economy do the work”.

Participants at the event called on the presidential candidates in the forth-coming elections to see aviation as a critical sector to drive the nation’s economy and engage stakeholders more when they are elected into office.

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