ATSSSAN Petitions Jonathan Over Planned Aviation Automation



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By Emeka Okoh

Members of the Air Transport Services Senior Staff Association of Nigeria ATSSSAN  have kicked against the proposed automation of revenue collection in various parastatals in the aviation industry. In a letter to President Goodluck Jonathan signed by ATSSSAN deputy  general Secretary, Comrade Olayinka Olu Abioye,dated  4th September 2012, urged the President to closely look at the operations of various agencies in  the aviation industry with a view to  ascertaining their functions.

According to the union, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority  NCAA was already  operating on Automated Direct Debit payment system which was being  warehoused by the IATA.

They argued that the Ticket Sales Charge TSC ,Cargo Service  Charge and sundry services like examination fees , license fees among others remained sources of revenue for NCAA and were collected by airlines in trust at the point of selling tickets and there was no need for government to waste  fifteen million Dollars and statutory payments of five percent commission of revenue collected for five to ten years.

On the issue of the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency NAMA, ATSSSAN declared that there was no need for different automation of the agency’s payment system  since its major customers were airport users

The Union said they were aware that NAMA was operating a Pay As You Go facility where all its customers pay or deposit money upfront for the anticipated service.According to ATSSSAN, the Total Radar Coverage of Nigeria TRACON has the capability and capacity to generate electronic billings for all its services through the automatic billing system as it was capable of capturing all aircraft within its area.

According to them, the all existing portal of the TRACON should be connected to the airport automated payment system and save the country billions of naira that planned to be wasted.

ATSSSAN  declared that the Nigerian College of Aviation Technology Zaria, derived  its sources of revenue outside government subvention were from course fees and sales of admission forms stressing , that NCAT already have a system or policy where all payments are paid via banking instruments through electronic transfer.

“By implication, revenue officers no longer handle physical cash for the college transactions. What then do we intend to automate in NCAT. NCAT is an airport end user who ordinarily should key into the airport automated payment system.”

The union said the proposed plan to automate the revenue collection points showed that certain people were hell bent in truncating the Presidents dreams and mission for the industry and urged the President Jonathan to intervene in order to allow industrial peace and harmony

that has existed in the industry.

In a related development, ATSSSAN has also demanded for stay of execution on the planned automation of revenue collections of aviation parastatals. In a letter dated 30th August 2012 signed by Comrade Olayinka Abioye, deputy national secretary to the Aviation Minister Princess Stella Adaeze, the union declared that with the planned automation, it has shown that the good intention of the government was clandestinely being twisted to heat the polity and create a foul environment and call unions name when things will get out of hands.

Describing the planned automation as “fraudulent contract” of automating revenue collections in NAMA and NCAA have been endorsed under very shady and unholy circumstances, between the management of NCAA and NAMA with First Bank Nigeria PLC and Avitech.

The union noted that the ministry ignored various calls to carry them along by allowing them have access to the contract draft for comments and perusal but to no avail.

According to the union, NCAT does not need a concessionaire to collect training fees on its behalf as NCAT gets iots share of five percent of TSC after deductions of commission from source and queried while the school will be signing another agreement on its share of TSC.

They gave the minister 21 days ultimatum within which to stay further execution of what they called corruption policy of automation of revenue collection in the airports.

 


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