Aso Rock cabal launches attack on first lady using Sirika
—-Removes her childhood friend as director of FAAN
In what appeared to be a test-run of the next moves of “the cabal” in Aso Rock, the Minister of State, Aviation in the Ministry of Transport, Senator Hadi Sirika last week carried out a disturbing shake-up in the aviation industry.
In the shake-up that has been described by many aviation watchers as another attempt to further cripple the already troubled sector, nepotism was glaringly at play.
The Minister allegedly brought his relations and friends with little or no experience in public service to head career officers who have put in between twenty years and above in various aviation agencies.
The most glaring of it all is the new Director of Human Resources in the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, (FAAN) Mr Norris Anozie, his long time car dealer friend who is 59 years old.
The new FAAN Director apart from having no previous experience in any known big private or public organisation is close to the country’s official retirement age of 60 years which raises more questions on what Sirika’s intentions are.
The new Director replaces Hajia Salamatu Baiwa-Eluma who is a well known childhood friend of the current Fist Lady, Mrs Aisha Buhari. Hajia Salamatu was deployed to the Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) which industry watchers considered as demotion.
AIB has a staff strength of below hundred as against the FAAN’s over seven thousand workforce.
Some observers believe that the deployment of Hajia Salamatu could not be unconnected with Mrs Buhari’s recent comments about jackals and hyenas in Aso Rck.
They reasoned that it was a way of signalling to her that they were still in charge of affairs in the presidency.
The cabal was also alleged to have used Sirika to test undermining the Vice President Yemi Osibanjo when he took files straight to the President in London to seek approvals.
President Buhari was said to have scolded him and sent him back to the Vice President who was acting at the time.
Meanwhile, the aviation unions are alleged to be putting heads together for a show down over what they considered as glaring move by the Minister to kill the industry.
A top official of the Senior Staff Association, who declined to have his name in prints hinted that the Minister’s planting of his relations and cronies into the strategic departments in all the agencies would be stoutly resisted.
According to him, “he (Minister) brought Assistant General Managers, General Managers and Directors with little or no experience into the key departments of the agencies and if we allow such it will be detrimental to the survival of the already traumatised aviation industry.”
Our source also disclosed that the Minister was hastily positioning his people in the key areas so that they would cover his ass in the event that President Buhari drops him from his cabinet.
He had equally reappointed the current Managing Director, Engineer Sale Dunuma who is 63 years old and graciouslly attained his retirement service years of 35 years in September 2015.
The Managing Director is also facing pending cases with the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, (EFCC) which is supposed to have disqualified him.
Dunuma was also said not to be comfortable with Hajia Salamatu who happens to be the oldest director standing as well as being close to the first family.
“He believes that if the Minister is removed as being envisaged, Hajia Salamatu being the most senior and experienced might be asked to take over which may spell doom for him since she has so much information on the deals being perpetrated.” The source further added.