Safety and security concerns are part of the reasons the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) refused to certify the Bayelsa Airport to commence operations.
The Details: According to acting Director-General of NCAA, Capt. Abdullahi Sidi, the failure of the state to construct an adequate perimeter fencing would continue to stall the operation and final certification of Bayelsa Airport.
As reported by Punch, Sidi stressed that the importance of perimeter fencing cannot be overemphasized as it is necessary to prevent encroachment into the airport vicinity.
Insisting on safety precautions, Sidi, who doubles as the Director of Operations and Training, NCAA, said safety guidelines would not be ignored. He promised stakeholders that the Bayelsa Airport would be certified for flight operations only after the issue of perimeter fencing is dealt with.
Sidi’s words: “Perimeter fencing is number one requirement for any airport, which is safety.
“Someone said the government had done about 60 per cent of the perimeter fencing and said the other side of the airport was creek, but I say that is not acceptable to aviation industry.
“We have what we call the airside and the passenger side of an airport. The airside is supposed to be much more secured than the passenger side.”
What you should know: The Bayelsa State Government opened the over N60 billion airport, known as Bayelsa International Airport, in February with an inaugural flight by the state governor, Seriake Dickson, from Abuja, followed by an Air Peace flight from Lagos.
In a recent Nairametrics report, Skyway Aviation Handling Company Plc (SAHCO) signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Bayelsa State Government to be the official ground handling provider in the Bayelsa International Airport.
The Manager, Corporate Communications, SAHCO, Mrs Vanessa Uansohia, said the firm would offer services to both international and domestic airline operators. She stated that with manpower training and investments in state-of-the-art aviation ground handling equipment, among others, the company would exceed customers’ expectations.