There is a sense in which people like Captain Dan Omale, a self-appointed gadfly of Nigerian Aviation do not give up, even when it is apparentthey are on a wrong trajectory. Sadly, if only Omale had applied such doggedness to his business, he would have been more successful.
Omale recently wrote a barrage of wild and unfounded allegationsagainst the leadership of the Ministry of Aviation and in particular,the ex-minister, Princess Stella Oduah. In it, Omale, an unlicensed charter aircraft operator, insinuated that the latter was still ‘manipulating’ things, even after her exit. I took the trouble towrite a reaction which debunked all his wild allegations in thatarticle published in Leadership newspaper titled “Oduah’s invisible hands still at work in aviation?”
But rather than accept the glaring facts and reality canvassed in my rejoinder, Omale has written a rejoinder to my rejoinder, in which hesimply resorted to attacking my person, instead of tackling my points. He wrote:After his failure to pursue a meaningful political career in his homestate of Plateau, he gained respite with a job in FAAN.”
This is very interesting. I am not the issue here. But suffice it tosay that, by the grace of God, between 1999 and 2007, I served aselected local government chairman, special assistant to the governor,commissioner for youths and sports, commissioner for information allof Plateau State. I was also special adviser to the minister ofstate for commerce and industry. I can go on and on. So, the failurehere is only in the befuddled mind of Omale.
Another allegation is his claimthat “In just three years as the Minister of Aviation, Oduah, in search of a puppet, changed three different director-generals of theagency, unprecedented anywhere else in the world. With such a highturnover of the heads of the NCAA, instability in the system becomesinevitable. And it is now showing.”
Now a look at that statement shows that it is false. Dr Harold Demuren was D-G of the NCAA until 2012.Oduah met him in that position and he continued until 2012 when hisstatutory tenure ended. No substantive D-Gl of NCAA was appointed until early2013, when Captain Fola Akinkoutu was appointed D-G of NCAA by Mr President.
So, where are the three D-Gs changed by Oduah? In fact, Akinkoutu, the second DG, was only recently removed after Oduah herself had left the ministry.
Unlike Omale’s false accusations, the charges that I made against Omale in my rejoinder remain unanswered and I am going torestate them here. One, Omale operates a chartered airline servicewithout a valid Air Operator’s Certificate, AOC. Omale should tell the world the number and year of issuance of this licence, if he has one.And since I work for the Ministry of Aviation, I can easily verify ifsuch an AOC exists or is fake; I can say, categorically, that Omale’s charter air service does not have a valid licence.
One can understand Omale’s frustration. Since the requirements for avalid AOC were raised three years ago under Oduah’s stewardship, Omale has not been able to meet the stringent standards set by the NCAA for such licences. In his anger and frustration, he keeps on raving that Oduah’s loyalists are ‘getting licences’ without providing proof ofsuch.
Everyone knows that aviation is not an industry you just gate-crashinto, because of its capital-intensive nature and stringent safety andsecurity requirements. So, even if you are a so-called ‘loyalist’, andyou do not have substantive capital base, you cannot make headway inthe aviation industry.
Moreover, records show that in the past three years, not more thanfive local companies were issued new AOCs. So, where did Omale get his idea that Oduah ‘loyalists,’ were being issued AOCsindiscriminately? The aviation industry here is a small one, such thatthe players know one another. So, Omale should name these people sothat we can know who they are.
Omale’s accusations are just what they are – sour grapes from afrustrated man. He is one of those staff, whose incompetence helped to pull down Nigeria Airways. Then, Omale, the half-baked aircraft pilot and fake aviation stakeholder, wants tolecture us about what it takes to be re-certified by the US AviationFederation for Category One. Very interesting! It is people like Omale who will not only wish but also work underground to ensure thatNigeria fails Cat 1 recertification to justify their false accusationbut they will fail because this administration has done enough in theindustry to merit recertification by FAA.
Not only do the various aviation agencies – FAAN, NCAA,NAMA, amongothers, have a surfeit of highly trained and experienced aviationprofessionals, the ministry can also hire both local and internationalexperts, if it needs to,in order to achieve its target goals. Therefore, Omale’s crying more than the bereaved over the country’sCat 1 re–certification is that of a self-serving and fake aviationstakeholder. These are just crocodile tears.
Omale also claimed: ‘Oduah was always flying our aircraft before andafter she became the Minister of Aviation.’ As someone who workedclosely with the ex-minister, I am not aware of any occasion, on which the ex-minister took Omale’s air kabukabu. As a serious-mindedministry, everything done officially by the minister is documented, except the ex-minister took the risk of flying with Omale in her private capacity.
From the foregoing, it is obvious that Omale is a mere charlatan,masquerading as a ‘respectable aviation stakeholder.’
Dati, the coordinating spokesperson, aviation parastatal, wrote in from Lagos.No tags for this post.