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Rivers Bombardier BD 700 Aircraft…ACN Demands Probe Over Ownership Claim

 

The Rivers State chapter of the Action Congress of Nigeria, ACN, says for comprehensive details of the controversial Rivers State owned grounded Bombardier BD 700 aircraft, there is need for the anti-graft agencies especially the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) to wade into the matter.

The ACN in a statement signed by its Publicity Secretary, Jerry Needam said this has become necessary in view of the claims and counter claims by both Gov. Chibuike Amaechi and the Management of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority over the purchase and ownership of the aircraft with Registration Number N565 RS.

Jerry Needam, the ACN spokesman recalls that in 2007 two helicopters were purchased by the Rivers State government under Sir Dr. Peter Odili which were inherited by the Amaechi administration.

This in addition to the 26 Seater DASH 8 Aircraft and 3 Seater LEGACY EM 145, bringing it to a total of four Aircrafts.

In 2012, the statement further noted, the 26 seater DASH 8 Aircraft was supposedly sold to the Cross River State government at a disputed cost and went on to trade in the 13 seater LEGACY EM 145 for a Bombardier BD 700 manufactured by Global Express Aircraft claimed to have been procured at the cost of $57m on one hand, and on the other, $47m.

 The ACN remembers vividly that it challenged this conflicting claim at the time which was never clarified neither was the Amaechi administration forthcoming with a clear-cut answer over the cost of the one sold off to Cross River State government as the figures he quoted earlier conflicted with that of Governor Liyel Imoke at a later time.

It therefore beholves on Governor Amaechi to clear the air over the mix-up in trading in the aircraft that was manufactured by Global Express in Toronto, Canada with that of the 13 Seater LEGACY EM. 145 manufactured by the Brazilian Embrearer.

 “Failure to do this will leave the Rivers people and Tax payers with no option but the conviction that they have been shortchanged through back to back transaction. It’s embarrassing to note that an aircraft belonging to a state government is bearing another name as the owner.

There may not be any other intention for this other than to deceive, cheat and outsmart if confirmed to be real. We want to know why and how much is involved”, the ACN demanded.

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