There was palpable anxiety at the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), as about 22 senior officials of the agency were on Wednesday sacked in a major shake-up.
Those affected, including directors, general managers and deputy general managers, were reportedly handed their termination of appointment letters.
Sources at the head office of FAAN in Lagos said that no fewer than 10 general managers were reportedly demoted. They were said to have earlier been improperly promoted.
It gathered that the sack was done by the Ministry of Transport following the recommendations of the Presidential Committee chaired by Mrs Winifred Oyo-Ita, head of Service.
Capt. Hadi Sirika, minister of State, Aviation, had said aviation agencies, particularly FAAN and the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), were over-bloated.
The committee, in its report, discovered that FAAN had no fewer than 40 general managers and 11 directorates created from existing directorates thereby raising overhead cost immensely.
It was learnt from an official of the Ministry of Aviation that the sacking was the first batch of the shake-up planned by the government to reposition FAAN.
Stakeholders said the Federal Government had been concerned about certain issues at FAAN such as the engagement of about 40 general managers, the creation of many directorates that brought about duplication of duties and raised the authority’s monthly overhead to an estimated N800m.
Sources said the government planned to reduce the number of workers by way of restructuring in order to cushion the effects of the current economic crisis.
Some of the general managers were said not to have the requisite qualifications for the sensitive positions they held, as many of them, including deputy general managers, had reportedly left the university about 10 years ago and could not have qualified for the office they held.
Almost all the directors were said to have been affected, while an acting director of finance was said to have been demoted to Grade Level 10 and redeployed to the Department of Information Communications and Technology.
Many of the affected officers were moved from Grade Levels 17 and 16 down to 10, 12 and 14.
Some of the demoted workers were said to have received their letters, authorising them to report to their superiors, who were their subordinates before the exercise.