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Condemnation trail Arik’s N387b debt estimate

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PHOTO: Arik Air

A groundswell of condemnation has trailed alleged mismanagement Arik Airline following additional revelations by the Assets Management Corporation of Nigeria (AMCON) that the former managers systematically plunged the airline into N387 billion debt.

Former Director of Flight Operations at defunct Nigeria Airways, Capt. Dele Ore, heaped the blame on the door step of Arik Air Chairman for allegedly appropriating what he said was the property of Nigerians.

Ore said Nigerians are eagerly waiting for the KPMG report, which outcome he said would help the government to take appropriate action against former managers for deliberately leading the airline to its present pitiable state.

He said it would be most appropriate for the government to arrest and prosecute him to serve as deterrent to other business men like him. According to Ore: “He (Arik Chairman) previously depended on Federal protection, which some us knew would be short-lived as it has eventually played-out with change of government. With such huge debt profile no right-thinking government would continue to cover it up, which was why the government ordered AMCON to step in the fleet of 30 aircraft was fast disappearing among other discoveries.”

Speaking in the same vein, Managing Director, Merchant Express Cargo Airlines Limited, Capt. Sina Akinfenwa, said the revival of Arik could take two or more years because of the rot that was allowed to permeate the airline.

Akinfenwa said the airline collected aviation intervention fund but frittered it away. According to him: “I want Nigerians to ask the former managers of Arik what happened to that fund. At that time they collected the intervention fund, they claimed it was meant to bail out the airlines so what happened to the money?

“If it is gone should that government pump in another fund without asking questions? We are talking about billions of naira the government injected into Arik and other operators. Arik’s problem is primarily man-made because they were not doing the right thing. If you are doing the right thing, government will be willing to encourage you, but as it is now, how do you expect government to support you when you owe the same government so much money? “Be that as it may, the essence of business is that you are credit-worthy. You cannot ignore your creditors, which Arik was notorious for,” he said.


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5 Comments
  • Richard Akerele

    What’s all the noise about! Nothing new under the sun as they say. Arik has been in trouble or at least not paying its bills since 2011 or before and those we entrusted with the countries money to ensure they looked after our interests obviously didn’t know what they were doing or were part of the debacle! Either way the money is lost.

    We should stop talking about saving Arik and start talking about liquidating what ever assets remain to reduce our losses. I do believe Arik own offices and properties at MMIA as well as planes. We also need to look at building a proper flag carrier or several which are privately owned but have government backing not in the form of funding but in concessions.. the past is gone we have to look to the future. LLet’s get on with it let’s

    • Artful ºDodger

      Oh yes, just wipe the slate clean and start again and the next time another one is deliberately ran to the ground, we repeat the same and keep going on like that. And some still wonder why Nigeria has been in reverse gear? Dude, people who do wrong go to jail. Arik got broke anyway despite the US and UK etc foreign routes where they earn money in forex. Today, Ryanair is the largest lowcost airline in Europe from selling tickets in 2 and 3 digit figures. Even in Nigeria, the cheapest Arik air ticket until lately was not less than $100. While Ryanair owners have brains, common sense, dignity, integrity, self respect and contentment, those who ran Arik have gross inferiority complex, lack moral values, discipline, common sense, have no self respect and above all, have not even any iota of dignity or integrity. What kind of a people steal from themselves? Go to America, Europe, Dubai and South Africa, you will find Arik´s money there in their banks and real estate. that is how inferior Ararume Ikhide, Jimoh Ibrahim etc are.

  • peter archibong

    wonders shall never end…what are they even doing with the cash? are they chewing it or using to procure a 100 lifetimes?

    • peter archibong

      the daft side of all these is that they get scammed by the west in US and Europe (whoare the worst 419 of all time) and keep the monies with them to trade and boost their economies while they lose itall at the end or even go to jail or die for it… sad but true

  • EdBaz

    Former Director of Flight Operations at defunct Nigeria Airways, Capt. Dele Ore blasts Arik? Capt. Ore, what happened to Nigeria Airways? You were Director of Flight Operations so I guess you must have some idea. Is it not the same misappropriation of funds? I am surprise you have the courage to join in blasting Arik. Any Nigerian who was a senior management of Nigeria Airways have no moral right to do so.