The Federal Government on Wednesday said it had not named any preferred bidder for the country’s national carrier, Nigeria Air.
It denied reports (not The PUNCH) that claimed the government had chosen Qatar Airways as preferred bidder for the proposed airline.
The Director, Public Affairs, Federal Ministry of Aviation, James Odaudu, disclosed this in a statement issued in Abuja.
The statement read in part, “Our attention has been drawn to reports in some media to the effect that Qatar Airways has been chosen as the preferred bidder for Nigeria’s national carrier, ‘Nigeria Air’.
“The report, coming just two days after the issuance of a Request For Proposal which was published in local and international news media, is not only false but capable of discrediting the process for the establishment of the airline, and discouraging interested parties.
“We wish to state that throughout the process leading to the publication of the Request for Proposal, the guiding principle has been transparency and accountability which we promised will remain till the final delivery of the project, and by which we stand.”
The FMA added, “We wish to state categorically that no corporate entity or individual has been appointed or selected, or even preferred for the project as the process for selection has just started with the Request for Proposal.”
It said all interested partners and the public were therefore advised to discountenance the report and proceed with their proposals, “as we assure them of our unalloyed commitment to transparency and accountability till the end of the process.”
The government said its driving force was the commitment of the current administration to bequeath to the country a national carrier that Nigerians would be proud of.
The FMA said its determination and commitment to establishing the carrier remained stoic.
“Finally we wish to appeal to media practitioners to always confirm information from the right quarters before going to press so as to avoid misleading the public,” the ministry stated.
Article first published on the Punch Website