The management of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) on Friday, forcefully ejected six retirees of the agency from the staff quarters they occupied.
FAAN alleged that the retirees were served notices to vacate the staff quarters over three months ago.
Mrs. Henrietta Yakubu, FAAN’s acting General Manager in charge of Corporate Communications, said the eviction of the retirees was appropriately done. SaharaReporters was informed that the eviction team was made up of FAAN officials in the security, administrative, legal, environment, operations and estate departments as well as officers of the Nigerian Police.
However, this website gathered that the Airport Police Command did not authorize the use of its men in the ejection exercise and has detained four of its officers for joining the exercise without prior approval.
A police source told our correspondent that the ejection exercise did not follow due process. Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the Airport Police Command, Mr. Joseph Alabi, did not deny the participation of officers of the command. He simply promised that their involvement would be investigated.
Mr. Thadeus Obidike, Chairman of Aviation Parastatals Retirees, insisted the eviction of the retirees disregarded a subsisting agreement between FAAN and its staff covered by the monetization policy of the Federal Government.
Mr. Obidike said the matter is already a subject of litigation.
FAAN spokesperson, Mrs. Yakubu, however, insisted that the agency acted appropriately by evicting the retirees, having served them of notices to move out of the quarters.
She said the six affected retirees are the first crop of former staff to abuse the privilege granted by FAAN.
Mrs. Yakubu said FAAN was right to retrieve the quarters for use by serving staff required to perform essential duties, especially such that require a timely response in emergency situations.
“They have to vacate the duty quarters because FAAN has paid them and written several notices to them. They were even given an ultimatum, and they signed a letter of undertaking that they will move. But as at yesterday (Thursday), they refused to move, and we have to activate the eviction order.
“The apartments cannot be sold; they are duty houses for essential staff. In the condition of service, the provisions made have been complied with. The affected retirees are just giving excuses that don’t hold any water.
“If they do not leave, how will serving staff have quarters to occupy? Duty houses are needed to run the airport system effectively,” argued Mrs. Yakubu.
SaharaReporters’ investigations revealed that the six retirees have been paid their gratuities by FAAN, but refused to vacate the premises.