by Salihu Tanko Yakasai
She had overseen many plane crashes that led to so many deaths without losing her seat. For Goodness sake, what is she to you Mr President that you cannot take action after so many allegations of misconducts have been labelled against her?
Few days after the elegant Aviation Minister’s shady deal was exposed (she bought 2 BMW bullet proof cars for herself with “due process” at the sum of N255million, which is equivalent to $1.6 million) ; the stubborn minister is once again in the midst of another controversy, this time around it’s one that she has been in before with the people of Kano. It is alleged that she has continuously blocked all attempts to allow many international flights that have earlier indicated their interest in landing/using the Kano International Airport.
Daily Trust reported that Qatar Airlines requested to land in Aminu Kano International airport and Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja, but Princess Stella instead wanted the reputable airlines to be diverted to Enugu International Airport and Port Harcourt instead, just like she did with Ethiopian Airlines.
The same Stella blocked three other International Airlines from coming to Kano, namely: Turkish, Emirates and Etihad who had all requested to land in kano and that they be given permission to do so. As it stands, only Egypt Air flies out of Kano and that monopoly has given them a blank cheque to do as they please, thereby leaving the many Kano passengers at the mercy of this airliner. Even the newly renovated international terminal at Aminu Kano airport is just an empty building with no equipment in place since it was commissioned earlier this year. This came after many long years of waiting for it to be renovated. All these are happening at the detriment of our business men who have to incur additional expenses and hardship by flying out through Abuja and Lagos Airports.
Since hatred has beclouded The Princess’ mind, let me refresh it for her a bit. The importance of Malam Aminu Kano International Airport (MAKIA) not only to the North, but Nigeria as a whole cannot be overemphasized. MAKIA is the oldest airport in Nigeria, with its operations starting as far back as 1936. If History isn’t significant to the Princess, let her know that MAKIA generates more than %50 of the revenue when International flights passes through Nigerian Airspace. Economically wise, many clearing agents have run out of business simply because our CARGO has been crippled, whereas if it were functioning, they’ll earn a living and remit tax to the state coffers thereby creating a chain of economic activities that can only leave Kano and Nigeria for the better.
It’ll cost a passenger from Kano and its environs an average of additional N50,000 if he has to fly through Lagos, not to mention the many businesses that have been affected by the downing of MAKIA; like Hotels, Car hire services, shops in the airport, Bureau De Change and what have you.
At some point, I couldn’t but wonder if Mr President has given her a free will to do as she pleases. For I cannot understand why he will be going to China to secure a loan for the upgrading of our airports and building new ones, yet his Minister of Aviation is mischievously blocking and undermining other airports while promoting others, without any sanction from The President.
What did he do, when she first blocked Emirates, Turkish and Etihad from landing in Kano? What will he do now, that this news of Qatar has been exposed? If the presidency has no hand in this, they should call this woman to order. She has become too controversial and his already lackluste government would do well to get rid of her if he really cares about “transforming Nigeria”. Her “wahala” is out of this world, she orchestrated the removal of two of the parastatal Chiefs under her watch that is: Richard Aisebugbu, MD of Federal Airports Authority Of Nigeria (FAAN), and Alhaji Auyo, the MD of NAMA, simply so she can have her way. She has looted the ministry’s funds as if it’s her inheritance money. She had overseen many plane crashes that led to so many deaths without losing her seat. For Goodness sake, what is she to you Mr President that you cannot take action after so many allegations of misconducts have been labelled against her?
We the people of Kano will not fold our arms and watch this woman completely kill our airport because of her personal interests and/or whatever grudges she has against us. We will put pressure on our legislators to ensure that they deal with her since Mr President cannot do that, we will keep writing articles and making our case in any platform that we have till we make sure that she is sacked. For she is serving the people of Nigeria which we are part of. For crying out loud, she is the Minister of Federal Republic of Nigeria, and not the Minister of Enugu and Port Harcourt. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH STELLA ODUAH!
Tanko Yakasai is a proud husband and father of two. He is a broadcaster with Freedom Radio, Kano. Yakasai believes in the unity and development of Nigeria, which paved his way into community activities through NGOs in transforming our society for the better. He is a registered member of the Congress for Progressive Change (CPC).
Op-ed pieces and contributions are the opinions of the writers only and do not represent the opinions of Y!/YNaija.