A former Vice President of World Bank and former Minister of Education, Dr. Oby Ezekwesili, has described the plan by the Federal government (FG) to establish a national carrier, Nigeria Air, using public funds as a waste of resources.
Ezekwesili, who spoke on an African Independent Television (AIT) programme Monday, Augusaid government’s plan to fund the establishment of the airline and later bring in investors to buy into the company, would be “putting the cart before the horse.”
The co-convener of Bring Back Our Girls, argued that if the government sincerely wanted to have a private sector-driven national carrier, it would have designed it differently.
Ezekwesili, who recalled when she was Vice President of the World Bank, insisted that if the federal government wanted Nigeria Air to be private sector-driven as it claimed, the design of the project would have been made in a way that investors would have provided start-up fund for the airline.
Sirika had also stated that the $8.8 million represents startup capital for offices, etc required for takeoff.
But $300million is the entire airline cash flow funding requirements (aircrafts, operations and working capital) for three years (2018, 2019 and 2020).
“This funding can be in the form of equity or debt. The financial model estimates cash flow requirements as follows 2018 ($55m – $8 million is included here), 2019 ($100m) and 2020 ($145m).
“In order to ensure take-off of the airline in 2018, government will provide $55 million upfront grant/viability gap funding to finance startup capital and pay commitment fees for aircraft to be leased for initial operations and deposit for new aircraft whose delivery will begin in 2021,” he said.
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