- Asks FG to limit them to just two entry points
AON, Airline Operators of Nigeria have called on the Federal Government to take urgent steps by immediately announcing a comprehensive travel restriction to only two entry points for Nigerian and foreign nationals coming from countries that have been confirmed to have over 100 cases of the COVID19 Virus popularly known as Corona Virus.
The airline group made this call on the heels of a strategic response meeting held between the Managements of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Nigeria’s Representative to ICAO, members of Port Health and Chief Executives of Airlines and Helicopter operators to develop and implement measures to prevent the influx of the virus into the country as well as curb its spread.
According to Chairman, AON, Capt. Nogie Meggison, the potential impact of the virus to the nation’s economy and security is unquantifiable and immediate response of restricting travel into the country by allowing only entry points in order to minimize the spread of the virus is needed.
He said,“Nigeria is about the only country in Africa yet to take a decisive action in putting in place strict measures to stop the inflow of the virus into our shores. We can say for sure that if the situation escalates in Nigeria other countries of the world would not hesitate to stop us from flying into their country. We would like to appeal to Government to stand tall by putting Nigeria first at this time and take an immediate action by restricting travel into Nigeria,” stressed Capt. Meggison,.
“May I propose that Government should immediately reduce entry points into the country to Lagos and Abuja airports only. This will allow for effective deployment of critical medical support staff and utilization of thermal scanners and other resources as well as promote proper monitoring of those entering the country through our airports by members of the Port Health that are already overstretched,” Meggison added.
The AON Chairman went further to cite examples of countries in Africa that had taken action including Kenya, Rwanda, Egypt, South Africa, Ghana, Guinea, Angola, Morocco, Chad and Tanzania. He therefore called for an immediate action to reduce the number of entry points into the country so as to be able to effectively control the influx of people into the country as AON members are willing to offer their services to distribute travelers around the country from the two entry points.