By Adekunle Williams
Lagos, Feb. 17, 2019 (NNN) The Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) on Sunday said that it ensured a 24-hour operation at all Nigerian airports on Feb. 15 to facilitate the transportation of Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC ) materials nationwide.
The General Manager, Public Affairs of NAMA, Mr Khalid Emele, disclosed this in a statement he signed and made available to newsmen in Lagos.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NNN) reports that INEC had announced the rescheduling of the Presidential and National Assembly Elections from Feb.16 to Feb. 23 due to logistics reasons.
Emele said the provision of the 24-hour navigation services was based on the directive from the Minister of State for Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika.
He added that there was no disruption in the provision of air traffic services on Feb. 16.
According to him, this was in keeping with the agency’s mandate of providing uninterrupted safe, effective, efficient, and economic air navigation services in the country.
“NAMA wishes to reassure all airspace users and the general public that the Nigerian airspace shall remain open for all airspace users before, during and after the rescheduled general elections.
“The agency has put in place appropriate contingency measures to ensure safe flight operations within the period, as well as possible extension of operational hours of any domestic airport where the need arises,’’ he said.
He advised airline operators, the travelling public and other service providers who were dependent on the agency’s services to carry on with their businesses as usual. (NNN)
Edited by Wandoo Sombo/Peter Dada
Airports’ Reopening: FAAN meets with Munich International Airport
The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) on Thursday held a virtual meeting with the management of Munich International Airport, Germany, to share experiences and compare notes on the effects of COVID-19 lockdown on airports.
Mrs Henrietta Yakubu, General Manager, Corporate Affairs of FAAN, said in a statement that aim of the meeting was to assess the readiness of FAAN to gradually begin operations, following the Federal Government’s directive for reopening of the four regional airports on June 21.
The presentation via Skype simulated from Germany and England was tagged: “Rapid Aviation Plan”.
Capt. Rabiu Yadudu, Managing Director of FAAN, said the authority was responding to the guidelines set by NCAA for gradual airport reopening and post COVID-19 operations.
Yadudu said: “It is important to also compare notes with other airports in the world.
“This is to make sure we are on the right track and join the global industry in building back travel confidence,” he said.
Yadudu said that Munich Airport had successfully reopened and recommenced domestic and international flights.
“So, it is worth sharing their experiences with them.
“FAAN intends to begin involving itself in route development and therefore, collaborative efforts between Munich and FAAN can help in that direction,” he said.
Herbert Keffel, the Munich International Airport lead, who was in attendance with his colleagues, Georgios Elkolids and Julian Duerdoth, highlighted the steps and considerations which the airport adopted toward the successful reopening.
Keffel said though, there were guidelines issued by the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) and ACI for the purpose of the reopening, the guidelines become more successful if they were adapted.
According to Keffel, this is based on the peculiarities of the airport environment, which Munich had successfully done.
Responding to question on the issue of orderly management of human traffic in a relatively small airport space, the Munich Airport team compared notes on how they had carried out flow management and social distancing orders.
Edited By: Folasade Adeniran/Olagoke Olatoye (NAN)https://nnn.ng/airports-reopening-faan-meets-with-munich-international-airport/
FAAN begins fumigation of Lagos, Abuja, Port-Harcourt Airports
The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) says it has commenced fumigation of International Airports in Lagos, Abuja and Port-harcourt ahead of reopening of flight operations in Nigeria.
Mrs Henrietta Yakubu, General Manager, Corporate Affairs of FAAN, made this known on Tuesday in a statement in Lagos.
Yakubu explained that the fumigation exercise was in line with the efforts to contain the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic ravaging the world.
She said though, it was not yet clear when the ban on flights would be lifted, the authority was taking the proactive steps.
“This is to ensure the safety of passengers and other airport users when the airports eventually reopen.
“In March this year, the authority embarked on a similar exercise of disinfection and fumigation of all the international airports,” she said.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the Chairman, Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 and Secretary to the Government of the Federation, (SGF), Mr Boss Mustapha, had in April announced the extension of ban on flight operations by four weeks.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Olagoke Olatoye (NAN)https://nnn.ng/faan-begins-fumigation-of-lagos-abuja-port-harcourt-airports/
Airports to bolster screening measures for domestic flights
South Korea’s state-run airport operator, on Tuesday, said it will beef up screening measures on all domestic flights to prevent the spread of the new coronavirus.
Korea Airports Corp. (KAC), which operates 14 airports, not including Incheon International Airport, said it planned to check body temperatures of all passengers boarding domestic flights.
Passengers with symptoms of viral infection will be requested to refrain from boarding their flights and will be referred to public health authorities.
The company said it has decided to tighten preventive measures amid the growing concerns over the spread of the novel virus.
Incheon International Airport, the main gateway to South Korea, currently carries out temperature checks on all travellers.
On Monday, South Korea added 76 new cases of the new coronavirus, bringing the nation’s total to 9,037.
Edited By: Abiodun Oluleye/Abdulfatah Babatunde
Coronavirus: Airline operators seek travel restriction to Lagos, Abuja Airports
The Airline Operators of Nigeria (AON) has urged the Federal Government to immediately announce a comprehensive travel restriction to nationals of countries that have been confirmed to have Coronavirus.
Capt. Nogie Meggison, the Chairman of AON, made the call in a statement in Lagos on Tuesday.
Megisson said the government should also announce a comprehensive travel restriction to only Lagos and Abuja entry points for Nigerian travelers coming into the country.
He said the call came on the heels of a strategic response meeting held between the management of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) and the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA).
Megisson said others at the meeting were the Nigeria’s representative to ICAO, members of Port Health and Chief Executives of Airlines and Helicopter operators to develop and implement measures to prevent the importation of the virus into the country as well as curb its spread.
“Nigeria is about the only country in Africa yet to take a decisive action in putting in place strict measures to stop the inflow of the virus into our shores.
“We can say for sure that if the situation escalates in Nigeria other countries of the world would not hesitate to stop us from flying into their country.
“We would like to appeal to government to stand tall by putting Nigeria first at this time and take an immediate action by restricting travel into Nigeria.
“May I propose that government should immediately reduce entry points into the country to Lagos and Abuja airports only.
“This will allow for effective deployment of critical medical support staff and utilisation of thermal scanners and other resources.
“This will further promote proper monitoring of those entering the country through our airports by members of the Port Health that are already overstretched.”
Meggison cited examples of countries in Africa that had taken action to include Kenya, Rwanda, Egypt, South Africa, Ghana, Guinea, Angola, Morocco, Chad and Tanzania.
He called for immediate action to reduce the number of entry points into the country.
According to him, this is to effectively control the influx of people into the country as AON members are willing to offer their services to distribute travelers around the country from the two entry points.
Megisson also urged Ministry of Aviation to take a cue from the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) by directing the various agencies under its supervision to immediately provide extend critical palliative measures to Nigerian airline operators.
He said the measures would further reduce the burden of colossal loses they had suffered and continue to suffer from the impact of the virus on air travel.
Meggison called on the aviation agencies through the Federal Ministry of Aviation to follow the same path by taking action to support domestic airlines that were the drivers of its national economy.
“Nigerian airlines are suffering heavily from the impact of the virus issue as the passenger numbers have dropped drastically and our overheads remain the same on many fronts and even increasing significantly on other fronts.
“Like we all know, Nigerian airlines trade in naira, but we do our business in dollars and the naira has come under pressure since the Coronavirus pandemic.
“The agencies should therefore help the airlines by immediately streamlining the over 32 multiple charges given to airlines which are mostly double billing.
“Government should also bear 100 per cent cost of disinfecting all aircraft for this period and provide thermal scanners, hand sanitisers and mobilise more manpower and training of Port Health personnel at our local airports to encourage more people to travel,” he said.
The AON chairman said the potential impact of the virus to the economy and security was unquantifiable.
Meggison said it need the immediate response of restricting travel into the country by allowing only entry points in order to minimise the spread of the virus.
Edited By: Tayo Ikujuni/Tajudeen Atitebi