The new electronic flight clearance system initiated by the management of the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) will reduce the timing of getting approvals for flight clearance among the many benefits it possesses.
This was made known by the agency while briefing the Minister of Transport, Rotimi Chibuike Amaechi and his State counterpart for Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, before a tour of the industry while commending agencies on the technological strides and advancements aimed at improving seamless flights.
Speaking after a demonstration of what the e-flight clearance can do at the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) Annex, Murtala Muhammed Airport, the visibly impressed ministers spoke through Hon Amaechi congratulating the industry for the strides as opposed to what they saw at the Nigerian Maritime Agency (NIMASA) where he said the funds approved and appropriated was not equated with what was on ground.
The Minister said,” I am so happy that the press is here because you criticize us well and so when we do something right you should be able to praise us, ‘abi nobi so’. If you see my posture at NIMASA yesterday you would know I was trying so hard to control myself”
“What we saw at NIMASA was visibly annoying and was nothing to write home about because the funds appropriated was not utilized for the purpose it was meant for. Here we are in a training school now the so called multi-purpose hall built is not half of where we are seated.”
On the e-flight clearance, Deputy General Manager Aircraft Clearance, Oladele Olafimihan, who gave a presentation on the E-Flight Clearance gave certain advantages of the system hinting the house on the efficiency it would bring with regards providing approvals to clients.
He said that Flight Permits are permits or permissions required by an aircraft to overfly a country’s airspace, or make a landing operation into the country for a technical stop or business operations.
He said, “All countries have their own regulations regarding issuance of flight permits as there is, generally, a payment involved. However, there is a need for such clearance or permit number to be obtained for air travels from the clearance issuing regulatory office. This process have been made easier with a software solution where flight agents can make such requests remotely from the comfort of their offices with a click away, and the Permit number is issued almost immediately.”
Some of the benefits he noted, included the fact that NAMA would be able to track all operators or agents and debtors and the agency along with the NCAA can track all aircraft on the airspace that violates AOC and PNCF.
He went on, “the clearance will enable NCAA to check all aircraft documentation authenticity and NAMA and NCAA would be able to track local movement history of any aircraft that came into the country .”
Earlier the Director-General of the NCAA, Capt. Muhtar Usman promised that the agencies management would continually drive the government’s vision of improving facilities.
Usman declared that as the regulator, NCAA had to continually amend its regulations, which it recently did with the Nigerian Civil Aviation Regulations, NCARs,
He added that the need to deploy technology to its clients could not over-emphasized, stressing that before the adoption of the aircraft e-flight clearance, clearance was done manually, but said it had collaborated with NAMA to ease clearance for airlines.
He recalled that Nigeria recently passed two audits; the American Federal Aviation Administration, FAA, Category One Status and the International Civil Aviation Organization, ICAO, Security Audit, which it scaled with 96 per cent.
He informed the minister that the industry was preparing for another safety audit in the first quarter of 2016 and assured that the country would scale the audit.
” We are prepared for another audit, which I assure you, sir that we will scale through as we have prepared very well for this, just as we did in the past,” he said.
The team also visited AIB, NCAA and other facilities within the airport.
The tours continues on Monday.