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  • Trains airspace managers on global air navigation plan

The Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) has cautioned managers at airports with limited hours of operations not to turn down requests for extension of services because of the political colouration such denials may be given.

This is just as the agency has concluded arrangements to train Airspace Managers across all airports in Nigeria on the Global Air Navigation Plan.

Making this revelation at the weekend in Port Harcourt during this year’s Airspace Managers’ Forum, the Acting Managing Director of the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA),Matthew Lawrence Pwajok said the caution to managers at airports with limited hours of operations was due to the period the country is in.

He said, “especially at this period of electioneering as this could be given political colouration,” saying that “the honourable Minister of Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika sees aviation as a support role to every sector and to everybody, irrespective of political leaning.”

On the training on global air navigation plan, the agency said it is targeted at equipping airspace managers with global trends in strategic air traffic management and also building their capacity for seamless airspace operations in their various domains.

According to the NAMA boss, it has become imperative that Airspace Managers at the nation’s airports are kept abreast of global trends in airspace management “as aviation is global, there is no Nigerian aviation standard.

“We are not operating in isolation and so we are maintaining international standards. We are benchmarking and implementing the International Civil Aviation (ICAO) Standards and Recommended Practices (SARPs), he said.”

Pwajok noted that the training would expose managers to Global Air Navigation Plan, Regional Air Navigation Plan and National Air Navigation Plan just as it would keep them acquainted with the Civil Aviation Policy which is the framework that guides operations nationally.

He said, “you must also be kept abreast of the Aviation Roadmap or Masterplan of the Federal Government; our Communication, Navigation, Surveillance/Air Traffic Management (CNS/ATM) Masterplan and the milestones towards attaining these master plans because these are frameworks within which we are expected to operate in carrying out our statutory function as the nation’s airspace manager.”

The NAMA boss said Airspace Managers needed to be top-notch in understanding the national air navigation plan as it relates to the implementation strategies, milestones, timelines, technology roadmaps for achieving the national plan and the strategic position of NAMA in the entire plan, even as he solicited for their buy-in to ensure successful implementation.

Pwajok said with the increased pressure on the aviation industry at the global, regional and national level following the growth in passenger and cargo, there was the need for the agency to grow capacity to be able to cope with the increasing traffic, adding that insecurity, expansion in the economy and the upsurge in political activities in Nigeria have also accounted for increased demand for air travel, hence the need for strategic air traffic management that would ensure seamlessness in operations.

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