The recent review, from N700 million to N800 million per annum, of advertisement concession granted to PromoWorld Advertising Limited by the management of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) has attracted suspicion to some of the agency’s management staff.
SaharaReporters reliably gathered that the management, in a letter to the agency’s accounts department, had indicated the reduction, citing low patronage.
The concession rate of N800 million per annum had been in place since 2001, making staff wonder why, after 15 years, it has been slashed when agreements with other concessionaires have enjoyed upward reviews.
PromoWorld Limited is in charge of billboards and other advertising platforms at the 24 airports directly controlled by FAAN.
A source at the agency said some top FAAN management staff and those in the Ministry of Transportation have been defrauding the Federal Government through the advertisement concession agreement.
He explained that rates charged advertisers by PromoWorld Limited have increased over the years, just as the number of advertisers has grown. This, said the source, should have necessitated an upward, rather than a downward review of the value of the concession agreement.
For instance, disclosed the source, the concession agreement with I-Cube Nigeria Limited, the firm in charge of the Access Toll Gate at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA) in Lagos, was recently reviewed from N40 million to N60 million monthly. He wondered why FAAN would come up with a downward review of that of PromoWorld Limited.
The source reckoned that revenues generated monthly from MMIA alone are enough to pay monthly salaries of all FAAN staff and called on the Minister of State for Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, to beam a searchlight on activities within the department and FAAN in general.
The source alleged that the advertisement department serves as a conduit pipe for FAAN management, adding that some former Aviation ministers had used it as their Automated Teller Machine (ATM).
“There is too much fraud in the system and a cabal in FAAN, in active connivance with some people in the ministry, is benefiting from the corrupt system.
“These are using PromoWorld Limited to divert revenues due to the government.
“The N800 million annual concession agreement has been in place since the days of former President Olusegun Obasanjo in 2001, but about two months ago, the FAAN management sent a memo to the accounts department that the agreement has been reviewed downward to N700 million.
“Something fishy is happening in FAAN that the government needs to focus its attention on,” a sourced added.