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,
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
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.