Who Is Mrs. Faithful Avokerie Hope-Ivbaze?
Mrs. Faithful Avokerie Hope-Ivbaze joined the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) on April 5, 1989 as Executive Officer 1 on grade level 7, having graduated in 1987 from the College of Education Warri, Delta state, majoring in English and History.
In less than a year she was transferred to Benin Airport in February 1990 as Head of Department thereby becoming the first youngest female to hold that position and the only staff in the department.
In her quest to acquire more knowledge, she took advantage of the opportunity provided her by the transfer from Lagos to Benin because Benin Airport was not busy and enrolled into University of Benin and graduated in 1996 BA (HONS) History.
It was while in Benin she had on- the- job training, and as a trained teacher, she was quick to learn because her predecessor had resumed in his new station before her arrival. Therefore she took time to read the handover notes and all the office files to have her bearing.
In her 14 years in Benin airport, though she was not nominated for any official training, she was dedicated to her job and embarked on self-sponsorship in responsibility and management courses in other to improve her skills.
She worked with four Airport Managers, colleagues, Government officials, aviation stakeholders and the media et cetera in her years of service in Benin. She enjoyed particularly conducting schools excursions for students and pupils from various schools that visited the airport within Edo and from Ondo and Delta states. To sharpen her Public Relations skills, she joined the Edo state chapter of the Nigeria Institute of Public Relations and became an Associate member.
Her wealth of experience as a young Head of Department in Benin was to propel her for higher responsibility when she was transferred in 2005 to Abuja airport as Head of Department and becoming yet again, the first female to hold that position in the department in Abuja.
She brought her wealth of experience to her new position by ensuring files were opened for appropriate filling system that was non-existent. She also embarked on aggressive marketing initially with her family car to enlist the registration of more protocol clients from two to sixty-five when she arrived, thereby increasing the revenue generation of the Department.
With the registration of more clients, the Protocol services gained more recognition from management and other stakeholders at the airports. Her remarkable milestones while in Abuja airport were the involvement in the hosting of the officials of Airport Council International (ACI) in 2016, rehabilitation of the Runway in 2017, Certification of Abuja Airport in 2017 and construction and Commissioning of the new International Terminal in 2018.
In all of these milestones, she also worked with four Regional General/Airport Managers, Ministry and National Assembly officials, colleagues and the media etc.
Mrs. Hope-Ivbaze had a slow but steady rise in her career. The miracle that happened in year 2022, gave her the opportunity to become the acting General Manager of the erstwhile Corporate Affairs Department, thereby working directly for the first time with the MD/CE, Captain Rabiu Hamisu Yadudu, under whom she learnt a lot (God bless him). She was later promoted to being the substantive General Manager having met the requirement through the statutory promotional examination.
In her professional field, she became the first female in the department to be conferred as a Fellow of the Nigeria Institute of Public Relations (NIPR) in August 2022.
As General Manager, her policy was to embark on human capacity building to ensure every staff attend one form of training or the other in systematic progression, in both local and international which she already started, but was short lived as a result of the instability in the Aviation industry.
Indeed, her first official assignment as General Manager, was the outstanding role she played in the successful commissioning of Terminal Two (2) of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport in March 2022 which was highly commendable.
She also embarked at ensuring all the staff of department in the out-stations (airports) got needed working tools starting with six computer systems already distributed to Lagos, Abuja, Kano, Port Harcourt, Calabar and Akure. The next batch of five awaiting audit verification before distribution.
She played a major role in the successful commissioning of new Protocol lounge in General Aviation Terminal (GAT), Lagos in May 2023.
She also played the major role and coordinated the first ever Virtual Commissioning of new Kano International airport in June 2023. This was adjudged the best among the four commissioned projects on that day by the Presidential monitoring Committee.
She also worked together with members of the media (Lagos of Airport and Aviation Correspondents LAAC and Abuja Transport and Aviation Correspondents Association, ATACA) other media agencies to deepen our mutual relationship which yielded a lot of positive reportage and goodwill and mileage for the Authority.
She became the General Manager, Protocol and Passages, following the major changes in the aviation sector at the twilight of the past administration in May 2023.Therefore, the erstwhile Corporate Affairs department ceased to exist ,when the Directorate of Public Affairs and Consumer Protection was created with a Director as Head. Thus, two departments were born out of the erstwhile Corporate Affairs: Protocol and Passages and Public Affairs departments now under the Directorate.
With another major shakeup in the Aviation Industry in December 2023, where all Heads of the Aviation Agencies and Directors were relieved of their positions, the mantle to act as the Director of Public Affairs and Consumer Protection fell on her as empowered and in line with the Federal Government directive, FAAN Conditions of Service and Civil Service rule. This made her yet again to be the first female to act in that capacity in the directorate.
To widen her horizon in the course of her service years, she attended several certificate courses, seminars, workshops and conferences both local and international. She also served in management committees as chairperson and member.
She is very grateful to the LORD GOD ALMIGHTY for the opportunity given her to have worked with the Management and staff of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Ministry and National Assembly Officials, the media and other Aviation stakeholders et cetera.
Her journey in FAAN wasn’t all rosy, because she met with stiff resistance and opposition that were very glaring in some cases but she is grateful to LORD GOD ALMIGHTY for HIS defence, protection and also for the lessons learnt from both great and small through it all. She wishes FAAN management and staff the best in the coming years.
Mrs. Faithful Avokerie Hope-Ivbaze is happily married to her beloved Husband, Chief Hope-Ivbaze and they are blessed with children and grandchildren.