The Federal Government has stated its readiness to deploy additional technology to advance aviation security in the nation’s airports, Captain Rabiu Yadudu, the Managing Director, Federal Airports of Nigeria (FAAN) has said.
Yadudu made the declaration at the national Aviation Security (AVSEC) Day and Awards 2021, in Abuja, on Thursday, under the theme: “Professional work force: Pre-requisite for building an effective security culture.”
The event aimed at promoting security culture at airports across the country, in line with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO)’s declaration of the year 2021, as the year of security culture (YOSC).
Yadudu said such move by the government would help it improve on its strategies to curb insecurity in the aviation industry.
“As we speak, bi-metallic security fence with Anti-climb has been installed in airports like Benin, Ilorin, Ibadan and Port Harcourt.
“The upgrade of the CCTV Surveillance Monitoring Systems has been concluded and operational at the MMIA and four (4) other International airports, while efforts are on-going to provide the same level of coverage for the domestic airports.
“The huge investments in technological equipment has been matched by capacity building in terms of recruitment and training“, he said.
Yadudu added that the objective of Civil Aviation Security was to assure the safety of passengers, crew, ground personnel, general public, aircraft and facilities of an airport serving civil aviation, against acts of unlawful interference perpetrated on ground or in flight.
According to him, unprecedented sophistication which advanced technology had brought into crime and criminality across the globe was a worrisome trend, especially terrorism, cyber-crime, insider threat and other vices.
He called on security managers at various levels to up their game and develop well-coordinated and robust measures in order to prevent, mitigate and, more importantly, be predictive and proactive.
All the milestones that previously seemed unattainable and impossible, have now become great achievements which are worthy to be celebrated, he said, adding that the development of new airport terminals was also another achievement that required celebration.
He said terminals at Abuja, Kano and Port Harcourt had been commissioned, while those of Enugu and Lagos were at the final stages, awaiting commissioning.
“These terminals have not only transformed passengers’ experience, they have also enabled the country to showcase her rising profile with regards to the modernization of existing facilities capable of comparison to anywhere in the world.
“The days of critical remarks about our airports and the state of the facilities are fast declining into the past.
`These commendable initiatives have been made possible the Honourable Minister, who has shown committed interest in the enhancement and improvement of the Authority to deliver the highest quality service in safety and security, “ he said.
Yadudu appealed to Sen. Hadi Sirika, the aviation minister, to consider the provision of COVID-19 testing units and kits at all the international airports in the country, saying that this would help to conduct tests on staff exposed to traveling passengers and other airport users.
“Having identified what our challenges are in the Aviation industry, I hereby seek for support, collaboration and synergy among the various security agencies and stakeholders at the airport, to attain the common goal we so desire.
“ I congratulate the Directorate of Aviation Security Services and wish you fruitful deliberations,“ he added.
Yadudu said the adoption of practicable measures to facilitate and expedite clearance formalities was mandated by the Convention on International Civil Aviation referred to as the Chicago Convention, with the objective of preventing unnecessary delays to air navigation.
The managing director stated that the Federal Government had pursued the adoption vigorously through the issuance of Executive Orders on ease of doing business in Nigeria, noting that the security of civil aviation was, therefore, a top priority.
“States have an obligation to maintain an efficient air transport system, a reliable and efficient process management to prevent congestion, confusion and disorder at airport terminals, as essential to the security of the system.
“FAAN has embarked on a strategic restructuring of its security and safety initiatives, irrespective of challenges faced due to the COVID-19 pandemic, in which the Directorate of Aviation Security played a major role in ensuring security at our airports and controlling its spread, “ he said.