AMCON denies take-over of Arik Air

By Oyise Oghene

LAGOS-Following the report that the Asset Management Company of Nigeria (AMCON) on Saturday took over the running of one of the country’s flag carriers, Arik Air over massive debts incurred in the cause of its operations, the Chief Executive Officer, AMCON, Mr. Chike Obi stressed that the report was not true.

Speaking with Biztellers on phone today, Mr. Obi described the story as false, maintaining that the story did not emanate from him.

Also, he explained that the management of AMCON had never considered taking over the airline for any reason, but suspected foul play from some quarters in the country.

 He said, “That story is totally wrong. I don’t know where the paper in question got that story from. It is not true. We have not taken over Arik and we have not even discussed taking over Arik as I’m talking to you right now. Do we run an airline? The biggest airline in Nigeria, we will just go and take it over like that because we feel like? I don’t know where they got that story and they even quoted me. The boy called me at 9pm at night and I told him not to call me at such hour because I don’t take call then.

 “How that response means yes, only God knows. We have never considered taking over Arik at this point. The story is baseless. Let me add something else to it, I got a call today (yesterday) that we have taken over something else. There is somebody moving around selling dummy to the people. You need to check whatever information you have and I can tell you that it is not true and AMCON has not even considered it. How can I confirm things we have not even discussed? Although, it seems everybody has his own hidden agenda.”

 Also debunking the report, the Media Manager, Arik Air, Mr. Banji Ola said that there was no iota of true in the story that was published.

“I told the guy that the story is not true. I don’t know where he got the story from. If it is true that AMCON has taken over Arik Air, confirm from AMCON yourself. I’ve already said that the story is not true. There is no iota of true in the story,” he said.

 A newspaper had on Saturday reported that AMCON had taken over the airline because of the debts it incurred since commencing operations in October 2006 and that the Federal Government was even looking for a partner for the airline.

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