Controversy is trailing the sale of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) staff quarters at the Government Reservation Area (GRA), Ikeja, Lagos.
Following the sale of the staff quarters, built on about two hectares of land, the management of FAAN in the first week of October issued all occupants a quit notice, which expires at the end of November. One of those affected by the notice is the Ag. Director of Administration of FAAN, Mr. Uthman; while no fewer than 25 other staff of the Authority are affected by the sale.
A source close to the agency told our correspondent that the staff quarters were sold about three months ago by the management, though without public bidding as required by law. The source alleged that the quarters might have been sold to some management staff, stressing that the sale contravened the public service rule.
It was also learnt that the agency may be planning to sell other quarters at Strabag Bus Stop within the Murtala Muhammed Airport (MMA) precincts in Lagos. But the proposed sale of the Strabag quarters may not go down well with some top-level staff of the agency who have threatened to ignore any quit notice issued by the management.
Besides, it was gathered that some officials of FAAN who retired in the past 10 years still occupy the staff quarters at the airport, and have refused to quit despite entreaties to them by the management to do so.
The source said: “The sale of the staff quarters at Ikeja GRA is illegal because it was not advertised in the media by the management. FAAN has been in custody of the property for over 30 years.
“However, some of the staff that occupy the staff quarters at Strabag have refused to quit despite the fact that they are no longer in service. Some were retired from the system in the past 10 years, but are still occupying their quarters. For instance, one Engr. Alao who retired from FAAN about eight years ago has vowed not to quit until FAAN management regularises all the processes.”
The Ag. General Manager, Corporate Communications, FAAN, Mrs. Henrietta Yakubu, confirmed the development in a telephone conversation with our correspondent. She, however, said it was the Federal Government that sold the property and not FAAN as claimed.
She said: “It was not FAAN management that sold the property at GRA, but the Federal Government. The land belongs to the Federal Government and not FAAN. So, there is no way we can issue quit notice to occupants of the quarters without a directive from the Federal Government that owns the property in question.”