Some officials of the Federal Ministry of Transportation have said that the ongoing re-organisation in the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) was expected.
A source in the Office of the Minister of State, Aviation, who pleaded anonymity, told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday that the exercise was necessary to correct errors in previous appointments in the agency.
According to the source, some of the aviation unions had sent petitions to the minister, citing irregular appointments in the agency since 2011.
The source also said that during the visit of the leadership of Air Transport Senior Staff Association of Nigeria (ATSSAN) to the Minister of State, the same complaint was tabled before him.
He recalled that the minister had reiterated his determination to correct the anomalies in FAAN.
He said that the committee constituted to look into the complaint had since submitted its report which was forwarded to the Head of Service for advice and further action.
“It is not an unexpected thing because there were petitions by the aviation workers’ unions, especially ATSSAN led by Benjamin Okewu.”
“When the Minister of State assumed office, he recieved the same complaint from the union and other stakeholders requesting him to look into the anomaly.”
“It will shock you to hear that some of the affected staff were placed on levels far above where should have been placed.”
“While some of were shown the way out, others were demoted from grade level 17 to grade level 10 because they were not qualified for the positions.”
“I think it will go a long way in addressing the anomalies and illegalities that had taken place in FAAN for a long time,” he said.
Similarly, a senior staff of FAAN who also spoke with NAN on condition of anonymity noted that the Civil Service is supposed to be a career progression institution.
He expressed regret that some past Ministers of Aviation turned the General Manager into a political appointment.
The source explained that the directorship cadre is a political appointment while the position of general manager is the highest career position.
According to the source, politicians also hijacked the position of GM for their families and cronies.
“This tsunami is a welcome development, especially for the career civil servants who have been short-changed by those illegal appointments.’’
NAN learnt that no fewer than 22 top management staff of FAAN had either been sacked or demoted.
However, FAAN has not made public the identities of those affected.