Nigerian Aviation Authorities on Friday temporarily prevented the private plane of the Rivers State Governor, Rotimi Amaechi, from leaving the Akure Airport.
Mr. Amaechi has been having a running battle with the presidency over his stance on major national issues, making observers believe the stoppage of his plane was influenced by the presidency to slight him. He has in the past regularly used the airport without any hitches.
The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, however, said it stopped Mr. Amaechi’s plane because the governor failed to declare the flight manifest.
The spokesperson of FAAN, Yakubu Datti, told PREMIUM TIMES that it was a laid down rule for any plane taking off from the airport to provide its manifest.
“The governor went to Akure and when he was ready to leave, he refused to declare his manifest and those at the control tower did not permit him and his team to take off,” Mr. Datti said
The spokesperson said there was no politics behind the agency’s actions saying “these are rules that have been stated down long time ago; even the president, before he takes off declares his manifest.”
He said Mr. Amaechi, the chairman of the Nigeria Governors Forum, was eventually allowed to take off immediately he declared the flight manifest.