The senate committee on aviation said it was working towards the review of all Bilateral Air Services Agreement (BASA) Nigeria has signed with other countries to make them favourable to the nation.
This is coming following efforts by the aviation ministry to review some sections of the 2006 Civil Aviation Act to ensure effective and efficient regulation of the aviation industry in line with global aviation standards.
The chairman senate committee on aviation, Senator Hope Uzodinma disclosed this to aviation correspondents at the commissioning of the remodelled Benin Airport Terminal Building at the weekend in Benin.
Uzodinma explained that in due course the Senate will come out with what will protect the national interest in line with what is obtainable in other parts of the world.
"I agree that given the evolution of things and how the sector is moving fast we must begin to review our policies and laws with a view to properly bring out efficient regulation which is expected of us and every responsible government," Uzodinma said.
On the Bilateral Air Services Agreement (BASA), which is skewed in favour of foreign carriers, the senate committee on aviation chairman lamented that all the BASA agreements signed by Nigeria were not done in the interest of Nigeria.
He added that as these agreements stands today Nigeria has little or no capacity to reciprocate, adding that as a result of that the Senate will make a deliberate policy to ensure that Nigeria's economy is not destroyed by western world or other parts of the world.
He said, "I can tell you that we are looking into the entire system of Bilateral Air Service Agreement (BASA), where royalties are being paid or where Open Skies Agreements have been signed and look at how it will benefit Nigeria and in due course we are coming out with what will be beneficial to our country and what will protect our national interest. The most important thing you will agree with me is that in this industry as it has to do with what is obtainable in other parts of the world, we have little or no capacity for reciprocity .So we must make a deliberate policy that will also make our economy not wrecked by western world or other parts of the world".
Experts over the years have been calling for a review of all the BAASA agreements entered into by Nigeria as they are tilted in favour of international airlines.
The agreements allow foreign airlines multiple designations into different airports in the country at the detriment of local airlines, whose passenger traffic are reducing by the day.
On the allegation in some quarters that the Senate often time harass agencies in the aviation industry, Uzodinma denied harassing anybody, adding that senate committee on aviation has the right to carry out its over sight function as provided for by the constitution.
Speaking further, the Senator, pointed out that over sight function of the committee is about asking questions and making sure that things are done properly and in accordance with the law, wondering if those accusing the committee of harassment do not want the body to do its job.
"What do you mean by harassment? What is the threat? We have constitutional role as legislators in Nigeria empowered by the constitution of Nigeria to oversight the activities and the entire economy of the country. When we carry out our own responsibility and as provided for by the constitution of Nigeria, does that amount to harassment? Tell those people coming from that school of thought that on the contrary the National Assembly is doing its best to ensure that things are done according to the dictates of the law as provided by the constitution and that we want to ensure that we don't do things different from what is obtainable in other parts of the world," he said.