Home Lagos Arik Air founder barred from airline’s premises

Arik Air founder barred from airline’s premises

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There was a mild scene on Tuesday at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, the headquarters of Arik Air, as the Chairman/Founder of the airline, Chief Johnson Arumemi-Ikhide, was barred from entering the company’s premises.

Arumemi-Ikhide with some of his aides had arrived at the premises of the airline in line with the court order which granted him access to the premises.

AMCON had taken over the management of Arik Air since 2017 and appointed a receiver-manager, Kamilu Omokhide, for the airline.

In 2021, the founder of Arik Air, Sir Johnson Arumemi Ikhide, and his wife, Mary Arumemi Ikhide (plaintiffs) filed an originating motion dated December 14, 2021, and prayed the court that the duty imposed on the receiver-manager, Kamilu Omokhide (first defendant) by section 553 of the CAMA 202O to act in the best interest of Arik Air Limited as a whole, includes the duty to act in the best interest of the plaintiffs (Arumemi and Mary Ikhide) as members of Arik Air Limited.

Arumemi-Ikhide also sought an order directing the 1st & 2nd defendants “to allow the Directors and Shareholders of Arik Air Ltd unfettered access to their offices, premises of the Plaintiff, facilities and staff required for the discharge of their functions.”

In line with the court order which ruled that the receivership of Arik Air does not preclude restricting access to the premises, the Arik Air founder made an attempt to enter the premises of the airline on Tuesday.

However, he was stopped at the entrance by the security guards on duty.

The Chief Security Officer of the airline identified as D Tom-West said there was an order from above not to allow him access to the premises.

In the ensuing argument, the CSO said he is only answerable to the receiver-manager.

He said, “The receiver manager gave an instruction not to allow you in. I am not aware of the court order. We cannot give you access to get into the compound. This is the instruction from above.

I’m very sorry that I’m keeping you people under the sun. We have the directive to deny you access. I’m obliged to respect the directive from receiver manager,” he said.

Arumemi-Ikhide had told the CSO that he was not at the premises to harass anybody or cause any problem but to respect the order of the court which granted him access into the premises of the airline.

He said he had a meeting with the Chief Operating Officer and Chief Finance Officer that he would be coming around on Tuesday and that some offices should be reserved for him which they agreed.

He said he was astonished that he was being denied access into the premises.

The Chairman later left the premises and proceeded to the MMA Domestic Airport Division of the Nigeria Police Force where he wrote a statement.

He said he would report back to his lawyers who would take up the matter from there.

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