The Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), has said the rise in political activity in Nigeria as well as the country’s expanding economy and rising insecurity are all contributing factors to the increase in demand for air travel.
The statement was made public on Sunday during a gathering of Nigerian aviation industry stakeholders.
Speaking at the 2022 Airspace Managers’ Forum, NAMA’s acting managing director Matthew Pwajok said it had become crucial for airspace managers at the country’s airports to stay up to date on international trends in airspace management.
According to him, there is an increased demand for air travel, necessitating the need for strategic air traffic management to ensure smooth operations.
Pwajok stated that with increased pressure on the aviation industry at the global, regional, and national levels as a result of increased passenger and cargo traffic, the agency needed to expand its capacity to cope with the increased traffic.
He cautioned managers at airports with limited operating hours not to turn down requests for service extension, saying especially during this period of electioneering as this could be given political colouration, adding that “the minister of Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika, sees aviation as a support role to every sector and to everybody, regardless of political leaning.”
According to Pwajok, it has become critical that Airspace Managers at the nation’s airports stay current on global trends in airspace management because “as aviation is global, there is no Nigerian aviation standard.”
The acting MD stated that the training would introduce managers to the Civil Aviation Policy, which is the framework that directs operations on a national level, as well as the Global Air Navigation Plan, Regional Air Navigation Plan, and National Air Navigation Plan. “You must also be kept abreast of the Federal Government’s Aviation Roadmap or Masterplan; our Communication, Navigation, Surveillance/Air Traffic Management (CNS/ATM) Masterplan and the milestones toward attaining these masterplans because these are frameworks within which we are expected to operate in carrying out our statutory function as the nation’s airspace manager,” he added.
The NAMA boss also sought managers’ support and buy-in for the minister’s aviation roadmap, which he said would boost the industry’s growth.
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Nigeria to Implement Biometric Clearance Gates at International Airports by March 2024
Nigeria is gearing up to introduce a significant upgrade to its airport security measures with the implementation of biometric clearance gates at international airports by March 2024.
This move aims to streamline passenger processing and bolster national security efforts.
Under the plan, five major international airports across Nigeria, including the Murtala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos, Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja, Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, Port Harcourt International Airport, and Akanu Ibiam International Airport in Enugu, will be equipped with biometric clearance gates.
These gates will utilize advanced technology to provide seamless clearance services for passengers entering the country.
Minister of Interior, Olubunmi Tunji-Ojo, emphasized that the installation of biometric gates reflects Nigeria’s commitment to enhancing border control management and adhering to global best practices.
The gates are expected to significantly reduce clearance times, with a passenger clearing in just 30 seconds.
Tunji-Ojo highlighted the gates’ dual purpose: expediting passenger processing while also enhancing national security by allowing for quick identification of persons of interest.
The initiative aligns with President Bola Tinubu’s Renewed Hope Agenda, aiming to provide quality services to Nigerians while ensuring national security.
This modernization effort is poised to address long-standing issues of delays and improve the overall travel experience for passengers at Nigeria’s international airports.
Foreign Embassies Given Two Weeks to Settle $5.36M in Ground Rents
The Nigerian Government has issued a firm ultimatum to 43 foreign embassies and diplomatic houses in Abuja, the nation’s capital, demanding the settlement of outstanding ground rents totaling $5.36 million within two weeks.
In an official advertorial published by the Federal Capital Territory Administration in the Newspaper, the government emphasized the urgency of the matter.
Failure to comply within the stipulated period could result in the revocation of the rent titles held by the diplomatic entities.
The notice serves as a final warning to embassies, including prominent ones like the British High Commission, South African High Commission, Royal Embassy of Saudi Arabia, and the Embassy of Japan, among others.
These embassies and diplomatic entities have been identified as defaulters in the payment of their ground rents.
This directive underscores the Nigerian government’s commitment to ensuring compliance with legal obligations and financial commitments within its jurisdiction, regardless of the status of the entities involved.
The ultimatum is reminiscent of a similar notice issued last September to organizations in Abuja, emphasizing the importance of timely payment of annual rents.
The consequence of non-compliance, as stated in the notice, is the potential revocation of land titles.
The deadline creates a sense of urgency among the affected diplomatic missions, as failure to meet the payment deadline could lead to diplomatic tensions and logistical challenges for the embassies involved.
As the clock ticks, attention is focused on how these foreign embassies will respond to the Nigerian government’s ultimatum and whether they will meet the financial obligations within the stipulated timeframe.
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