14th September, 2010
Arik Air has exonerated itself from any blame and accused the Nigerian Civil AviationÂ Authority (NCAA) of being responsible for the N21 million dud cheques scandal currentlyÂ tearing apart the airline and the government agency.
The airline said in a statement signed by its media officer, Mr. Adebanji Ola, that NCAA didÂ not follow normal banking procedure and could not cash the money.
â€œThe first time NCAA presented the cheques, the bank could not confirm them with Arik Air asÂ normal banking procedure demanded, thus the agency was asked to represent the cheques.Â ThisÂ NCAA did not do.
â€œArik Air thought the NCAA had represented the cheques as they were not returned to theÂ airline and are still with the agency.
â€œArik Air has issued a bank draft, drawn from the same bank (Intercontinental) and for theÂ same amount, to NCAA. This is a proof that the airline is a responsible company and alwaysÂ ready to pay its bill as at when due,â€ Adebanji said.
Meanwhile, Arik Air has said that it is not broke as suggested by several media reports thatÂ it is owing billions of naira to banks and aviation agencies.
â€œThe airline wants to state categorically that its account at Intercontinental Bank is wellÂ funded and there is no ground for the five cheques totaling N21, 759, 201.00 to have beenÂ dishonoured.
â€œIntercontinental Bank is one of the several banks that serve as Arik Airâ€™s revenueÂ collecting agent through which daily ticket sales are deposited, thus at no time Arik AirÂ account with the bankÂ will not be well funded,â€ Adebanji said.