THE Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, has commended the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) and Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) for measures put in place at the airports to curtail the spread of COVID-19.
At the Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, Kano on Saturday, the minister told newsmen that the two organisations had done extremely well on physical distancing and standard hygiene protocols established and properly followed at the nation’s airports.
Sirika had led a team of aviation industry stakeholders and the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 from the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja to Kano on a simulation exercise with MaxAir Flight.
He said: “I am very glad and I think the NCAA with FAAN have done extremely well under our watch to ensure that everything we put in place on physical distancing and good hygiene is being followed.
“So, we believe this airport is one of those airports that are safe to operate in and out during this COVID-19. I am happy with what I saw and it is good enough for us to go.”
The minister further said that domestic flights would fully resume at Kano, Maiduguri, Benin airports among others across the nation on July 15.
Sirika stressed the point that any airport not yet ready would be given enough time to prepare in order not to risk the lives of people.
The Chairman, Senate Committee on Aviation, Smart Adeyemi, commended the Ministry of Aviation for good supervision to ensure right things were done towards safety to ensure COVID -19 was not spread at the airports.
According to Adeyemi, “quite a lot of measures have been put in place as far as this airport is concerned to ensure that there is adequate protection and safety for passengers who will be coming in and going out.
“When you talk about this pandemic, the airport is key to eradicating and minimising the infection. Today, we have gone round to see the measures already on ground with the objective of minimising the spread.”
The senator urged the ministry to ensure adequate water supply in the Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, Kano Airport as it was done in Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja.
“I want to suggest that the minister look at the possibilities of extending supply of water to the departure point of this airport. All other things that are needed have been put in place.
“I also believe that there is still a lot of information to be on the board to direct passengers who will be coming in, especially those who will be coming in newly.
“When we compare with that of Abuja, we discovered that the departure needs few things to be put in place.
“A lot of campaign still needs to be done within and outside the airport against the spread of COVID-19. With this exception, I know they have done the best that is required of them,” he said.