Nigeria: We Don't Collect Bribe to Approve Flights, Says Sirika

2 June 2020

Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, has said he has never asked for or received a bribe and has challenged anyone who has contrary information to come forward.

Sirika yesterday said the clarification became necessary after backlash from Nigerians on Twitter accusing the Ministry of Aviation of demanding money before flights are approved.

Speaking at the presidential task force on COVID-19 briefing in Abuja, he said such claims are false.

"I have read also on Twitter that there are certain monies being charged for approval for flights. This is far from the truth. It's for free. It's just frivolous; it's just a pen to be approved," he said.

"Just send a text message, we will send them back as approved. So nobody should con anybody and people should stop living in the past.

"For us in this government, we are very conscious of the weight of responsibility on our heads. I've been minister five years now and I challenge anybody before all of these cameras.

"There's not a single aviation business man or woman owning an aeroplane or any airline or doing any kind of business, catering, taxi, hotel, whatever it is, any business whatsoever within the aviation industry, or any permanent secretary, director or any civil servant or any public servant or whatsoever that has given me or I asked, who he offered, or I take any money and I challenge anybody today.

"There is freedom of information act in place. We will give you all of the information, all of the documents that are required."

The minister advised citizens to stop "living in the past" because the Muhammadu Buhari-led administration is different.

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