Reps Panel Move To Recover 2 Nigeria Helicopters Sold To Private Individuals

NV News

………Reps Probe Panel Vows to Recover 2 Govt Helicopters Sold to Private Individuals below 20% of Cost Price, Invites Minister of Aviation, Works, Others

The House of Representatives Committee on Public Assets which is probing the controversial sale of two Bell Helicopters, Bell 206L4 BZB and Bell M2061- L4 Helicopters belonging to the Nigerian College of Aviation Technology, Zaria to private individuals has vowed to recover them.

The Chairman of the Committee on Public Assets, Hon. Ademorin Kuye during investigative hearing expressed concern over the sale of the two helicopters to private individuals, when the college is left with no helicopter for training.

The committee also questioned the process leading to the sale of the helicopters as security agencies including Nigerian Air Force, Navy and Police indicated interest to purchase them but were denied by the management of the NCAT.

- Advertisement -

The three security agencies according to various submissions, did not only indicate interest to purchase the helicopters by writing but also visited the college but were denied the opportunity to purchase them.

The Acting Rector of the College, Shaka Imalighwe who led the management team to the investigative hearing said though he was the Deputy Rector of the college as of the time the helicopters were sold, he was not part of the team/committee that facilitated their sales.

Shaka Imalighwe noted that he took over the management of the college in acting capacity in January 2024.

The House Committee Members lamented that despite initial appeals to NCAT to provide certain documents regarding the process that led to the sale of the helicopters in May 2023, they have not been able to provide any information or document in respect of approval of Federal Executive Council, FEC and Ministry of Aviation as well as newspaper publication advertising the college’s intention to sell the helicopters.

A letter from Cooperate Affairs Commission, which the lawmakers directed the managing director of Premier Jet Services (a company that purchased one of the helicopters) said Premier Jet Services is not in the record of CAC as one of the registered companies.

- Advertisement -

Though the representatives of the two companies that purchased the helicopters, Premier Jet Services and Blue Horn said they bought the helicopters as scraps, the Acting Rector, Shaka Imalighwe told the committee that the helicopters were in service and being maintained by relevant aviation bodies when they were sold.

The acting Rector of the college also confirmed to the lawmakers that at the moment, there is no single helccpter in the institution for training.

Similarly, a letter from the Certified Institute of Auctioneers Nigeria, noted that Tresmo Nigeria Ltd, is not a member of the institute. Tresmo was the company hired by NCAT to sell the helicopters. The lawmakers argued that it is wrong for NCAT to have used an unlicensed auctioneer to sell the helicopters.

The representative of Tresmo told the committee that his company collected 1.5% as commission while the two Bell 206L4 BZB and Bell M2061- L4 Helicopters were sold at $650,000 and $550,000 respectively in May 2023.

The Bursar of the college however said the amount remitted to the government is in Naira raising further questions whether the actual amount was remitted in view of exchange rate. .

The committee directed the immediate past and current Minister of Aviation to appear before it in the next investigative hearing. Also summoned is Ministry of Works, Ministry of Finance Incorporated, MOFI, both immediate past and present Rector of Nigeria College of Aviation Technology among others.

Share This Article
Leave a comment