Tribute: Sirika’s insatiable hunger for knowledge


  • Bags degree in Air Transport Management from London Varsity


Education is the bedrock of any society. Its importance to whoever has it is unquantifiable and not having it renders one almost impotent. This assertion is true as education is seen as the total development of an individual.

This quite demonstrates the insatiable appetite of Nigeria’s aviation Minister, Senator Hadi Sirika for education following the completion of his Master of Science Degree, in Air Transport Management, from the City University, London. This is actually his second degree in Air Transport Management.

It is safe to say that Sirika is one of the most educated Ministers that the country’s aviation industry has had having graduated from the Petroleum Helicopters Institute, USA, Flight Safety International, United State of America, and Delta Aeronautics, USA.

Sirika’s educational feat saw him juggle his hectic schedule as Minister of one of the most demanding sectors and studying to excel in the Master’s programme which showed how determined he was to succeed not only as a Minister but to equally pass his exams that led to an award of Master of Science Degree, in Air Transport Management.

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The convocation ceremonies were beamed live. He made a post on his verified Twitter handle that the COVID-19 pandemic had denied family members, friends, and associates the opportunity to properly celebrate the occasion with him the way they would have wanted.


Sirika poses for a photograph as he was awarded Masters of Science degree in Air Transport Management at City University, London

Commissioner, Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB), Akin Olateru, an aircraft engineer has congratulated the Minister for the feat.

Olateru, in his congratulatory message, said, “I am so happy to share in the celebration of your graduation, with a Masters in Air Transport Management, from the prestigious City University, London.

“You are indeed a man of many great talents, formidable and worthy of emulation.  You are an exceptional leader, and I am so honoured and proud to be associated with you. You are the first Aviation Minister in the history of Nigeria to possess an M.Sc in Air Transport Management. May the blessings of Allah abound for even further and greater feats”.

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“I salute you, sir, as your efforts are so well deservedly crowned with success. May Allah strengthen you for greater and more significant achievement”.

Stakeholders who spoke to Aviation Metric commended the Minister for the personal feat and urged him to translate the acquisition of more education to improve the aviation industry and to take it to a greater height.

More work despite visible achievements

It is hoped that the Minister would use the remainder of his tenure as a Minister to consolidate on the achievements of the past six years.

Despite his undeniable achievements, there are many areas that need his attention just as there is ample time still left to achieve them. It takes gut, commitment, higher patriotism to get the remaining jobs done.

Two projects that are contentious and seem to have divided friends, colleagues, and experts are airports concession and the plan to float a national airline for Nigeria, which Sirika said would be bequeathed to the country in April 2022; just three months away.

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Issues around lack of structure, personnel, infrastructure, certification, and details on equity holding have pitched proponents of the project against some industry stakeholders. They also hinged their pessimism on previous failed promises by the Federal Government to float a national carrier.

This is a year the Federal Government, and by extension, Sirika put machinery in place to pursue the dreams they have for Nigerians in the aviation sector. The year 2022 would be a defining year for them when they crystalise whatever agenda they have for the industry that is highly capital intensive and safety dependent.

Wole Shadare