Special Assistant on Digital Communication to President Muhammadu, Bashir Ahmad, has said it is not a secret that Ethiopian Airlines is a major partner in the Nigerian Air project. Ahmad disclosed that Nigeria should expect more of it as Ethiopian Airlines will frequent Nigeria henceforth being a partner in business. There have been both negative and positive reactions following the unveiling of Nigerian Air by the Minister of Aviation, Mr. Hadi Sirika, that Nigerian Air was a leased Airline from the fleet of Ethiopian Airlines.
Some section of Nigerians has accused Mr. Sirika of using the Nigerian Air project as a means of defrauding the government.
However, reacting to the comments, Ahmad revealed through his official Twitter account that; “It is never a secret that Ethiopian Airlines is one of the major shareholders/partners in the Nigeria Air Limited projects. Never! Save the cry now, and expect to see more Ethiopian Airlines aircraft branded in our national carrier’s color.
“Like Nigeria Air, many major airlines around the world are not owned by their governments, British Airways, which IAG owns, is an example.
According to Ahmad, “This is a February story, but still very relevant and interesting — “After a lengthy selection process, the Federal Government chose Ethiopian Airlines – the continent’s consistently most successful carrier – as its strategic equity partner, with a 49% shareholding in the new company.
“The Government will hold just 5% of the new airline, with other Nigerian investors making up the remaining 46%.
He explained that “The intention is that Ethiopian will supply its managerial and organizational expertise, together with an initial batch of aircraft, for the new flag carrier.”