We are not indebted to you, Bi-Courtney tells FAAN

  • Remains open for operations

The Management of Bi-Courtney Aviation Services Limited (BASL), operators of the domestic wing of Murtala Muhammed Airport Terminal Two (MMA2), Ikeja, Lagos, has restated its commitment to ensure seamless flight operations and services at the terminal.

This is coming on the heels of the release by the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) in the form of a Notice To Airmen (NOTAM) that with effect from Monday December 10, 2018, aviation security personnel will be withdrawn from the terminal.  This action is due to alleged financial infractions against BASL.

It would be recalled that FAAN had threatened to withdraw its personnel from MMA2 due to alleged indebtedness to the tune of N1, 943,323,516.50 billion naira.

A statement by the management of the firm which was made available to Woleshadarenews stated that in a letter dated October 30th 2018 to BASL pertaining to outstanding personnel costs for FAAN staff deployed to MMA2, demanding Bi-Courtney to pay for the provision of the Aviation Security, Rescue and Fire Fighting Services as invoiced by FAAN among other charges or face withdrawing its personnel.

READ ALSO:  Lagos set to assist FAAN with million dollars rail project for MMIA

It noted that this was formally responded to in a letter addressed to FAAN reiterating BASL’s stance on the demands for payments of purported outstanding liabilities.

In this letter, BASL stated, “We have consistently brought it to your notice that we have a judgment credit of N132, 540,580,304.00 (one hundred thirty-two billion, five hundred forty million, five hundred eighty thousand, three hundred four Naira) since 03 March 2009. This credit arose directly from the non-implementation of the Concession Agreement by the appropriate authorities. The Courts have consistently ordered that any liability we have to FAAN or any federal government agency should be deducted from this amount”.

It alleged that despite the receipt of BASL’s response, FAAN have flagrantly disregarded several Court Orders including the most recent with reference Suit Number – FHC/ABJ/CS/1422/18/ issued on Wednesday, the 28th of November 2018 pertaining to this matter, duly served to FAAN, ordering that “the status quo be maintained and that nothing that may disrupt and / or hinder the operation of the Airport should be done pending the hearing and determination of the Motion on Notice”.

READ ALSO:  Reduced operations forced us to cut workforce- Bristow Helicopters

The management stated that ample safety and security measures had been put in place to ensure the withdrawal of FAAN personnel does not in any way impede or disrupt smooth flight operations and other business activities at the terminal, reiterating that there are adequately trained and NCAA certified personnel to man the various parts and all sensitive points at the terminal.

The BASL management, since inception said that it has trained its own Aviation Security Personnel to work along with FAAN Security at the terminal.

Since 2016, BASL have been performing the same service that FAAN performs in their absence.  Staff are trained in accordance with the National Civil Aviation Security Training Programme (NCASTP) in respect of X-ray Image Interpretation and physical security screening.

READ ALSO:  Counter terrorism: UN trains Nigerian aviation security officials

The terminal operator stated that the withdrawal of FAAN personnel would in no way jeopardize security levels.

 “It is known that the NCAA have conducted numerous audits on FAAN personnel at the terminal revealing that many of the staff are absent and that the required number are not on duty or do not have the requisite training”.

“BASL assures all air operators and the travelling public that the regulatory requirements for security and safety will be strictly adhered to and complied with in full.

Wole Shadare