Flight resumption: FG constitutes COVID-19 protocols enforcement team - PUNCH
BY Okechukwu Nnodim, Abuja
The Federal Government on Monday said it had positioned enforcement teams within and outside airport terminals to enforce all safety protocols against the spread of COVID-19 at airports.
It said the protocols had been approved by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority and were in accordance with the guidelines of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control.
The Managing Director, Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, Rabiu Yadudu, disclosed this at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International, Abuja.
Yadudu spoke when members of the House of Representatives Committee on aviation visited the NAIA to examine the guidelines ahead of commercial flight resumption on Wednesday.
He said, “We have done a lot in the past few weeks. The protocols have already been established and approved by the NCAA and are in accordance with the guidelines of the NCDC as set out at the national level.
“So we are ready and we will enforce our protocols. We now have monitoring and enforcement teams working outside and inside the terminals to ensure that people adhere and strictly respect the protocols to the letter.”
Ahead of the gradual resumption of commercial flight operations from Wednesday, FAAN released some specific guidelines that passengers and airport users must adhere to at the airports.
It said the new Standard Operating Procedure was aimed at protecting all stakeholders and preventing further spread of the COVID-19.
The authority stated that in the “new normal’, all departing passengers must arrive the airport properly kitted with their face masks on and must ensure a minimum of 1.5m physical distancing.
“Aviation medical/port health personnel would screen each passenger and ensure the use of face masks. Those travelling with pets must get necessary clearance from Nigerian Agricultural Quarantine Services,” the authority stated.
It said all passengers’ luggage would be disinfected before entry into departure halls, as passengers were required to wash their hands, among other mandatory guidelines for travellers.
Yadudu assured passengers on Monday that the authority had put in place everything necessary for the reopening of airports, particularly the Abuja and Lagos airports that would commence full domestic operations from Wednesday.
In a related development, the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency has procured aeronautical search and rescue equipment to boost its capability ahead of the reopening of the airspace.
NAMA disclosed this in its weekly news bulletin, where it stated that the equipment was distributed among Nigeria’s Rescue Coordination Centres in Lagos and Kano, and at its sub-centres in Abuja, Port Harcourt, Maiduguri, Enugu, Ilorin and Sokoto.