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ICAO CERTIFICATION: Operators’ damning report may ruin Nigeria’s chances



ICAO CERTIFICATION: Operators' damning report may ruin Nigeria's chances

President of the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Dr. Bernard Olumuyiwa Aliu, has embarked on a three-day official visit to Nigeria.

The visit is part of activities for the final certification of the Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA) Ikeja, and the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport (NAIA), Abuja, at the end of September, 2017

According to spokesman of the Aviation Ministry, James Odaudu, the three-day tour had already seen the ICAO President chat with top government officials, particularly, the two supervisory ministers, Rotimi Amaechi and Senator Hardi Sirika at the weekend.

The ICAO President is billed to meet on Monday with stakeholders in the industry, who are said to have prepared a paper for the forthcoming meeting.

There are fears, that the operators’ paper, may have some clauses that will expose the in-action of policy makers in Nigeria.

An insider within the Aviation Operators Organisation of Nigeria (AOON) a coalition of local airliners and their employees, who pleaded for anonymity, disclosed that their report, if not properly reviewed might delay Nigeria’s dream of achieving certification of the country’s two international airports.

Read also: Local airlines lose N10bn in 3 weeks of Abuja Airport closure

“Their (AOON’s) report will be damning, unless they are approached to have some changes made before its presentation”, the source stated.

But Sirika assured the media that Nigeria would tap maximally from the high powered delegation, adding that there are still ongoing efforts at ensuring that before the ICAO visitation, all facilities must be put in good shape, if the two airports are to pass their assessments.

Aliu at a pre-meeting session with civil aviation leaders on Friday, at the Aviation House, Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) Headquarters, said the certification will border on: Cyber Security, Manpower and Upgrade of Equipment, among others.

Aliu, who is accompanied by the Director General, NCAA, Capt. Muhtar Usman from Ghana on the visit had earlier undertaken the same trip in Ghana.

According to Mr. Babatunde Ajao, an aviation insurance expert, the only option left for Nigeria is to find a common ground with the stakeholders before the visit of ICAO inspectors in September.

“If Nigeria must utilize the opportunity of getting certification it will lie with the operators’ input, otherwise, there are still a lot of work to be done, ” Ajao stated.


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