We are not in hurry to reopen all airports, says minister


Domestic flights resumed yesterday, at Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport (MAKIA), Kano amidst strict adherence to COVID-19 protocols. Although the new normal activities restarted with full deployment of aviation security to enforce compliance with guidelines, the flight operations kicked off with low patronage.

In full compliance with social distancing protocol, the airport authority had limited the number of vehicles allowed entry into the main parking area.
Foot signs were placed at both departure and arrival terminals to keep passengers two metres apart. Officials of Kano State Ministry of Environment subjected passengers’ baggage to thorough disinfection at the entrance of departure terminal.

However, Very Important Personalities sighted at the VIP lodge were allowed entries with their security protocols, which was against the guidelines stipulated by the Aviation ministry.
 
Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) had cleared all the five airlines operating along Kano route, though many of the operators departed with less than 30 per cent capacity.

For instance, Air Peace, which departed Kano to Abuja at about 8.30am left with two passengers, while the second flight left Kano for Lagos at about 11.45am with 14 passengers. Similar low turn out of passengers was also noticed with Azman Air, Max Air and Aero contractor.

Meanwhile, Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika disclosed that the Federal Government is not in a hurry to reopen other airports across the country at the expense of Nigerians’ safety.

Hadi, who was at Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, alongside members of National Assembly committees on Aviation to witness the reopening of the airport, noted that despite the scheduled date for the reopening of all other ports, those found uncertified will remain close. 

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