FEDERAL Government of Nigeria today shifted the resumption date for the international flights from August 29 to September 5, 2020 giving reasons why the date had to be so.
The Director-General, Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Capt. Musa Nuhu, announced the new date at national briefing of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 explaining that the initial announcement was anytime from August 29 and now the sacrosanct date is 5th of September.
According to the NCAA Director-General there were non-aeronautical logistics that needed to be put in place before the country’s airspace is opened to international flights.
Nuhu said, “Since the announcement by the honourable minister of aviation a few weeks ago that international flights will resume anytime from 29th of August, the aviation sector has worked assiduously to be ready for this date.
“The aviation sector including the airports is ready to resume on the 29th. However, we have other non-aviation logistics we are still working on mostly to do with the Covid-19 protocols, tests, and online platforms. We need to get this in place so that we will have a smooth and efficient resumption of international flights without difficulties for all the passengers.
“So, for this reason, unfortunately, I have to let you know that the resumption date has been shifted by one week to the 5th of September which is now a sacrosanct date. The initial announcement was anytime from August 29. Now we have fixed a date – 5th of September to ensure that resumption of international flights.
Captain Nuhu equally said the country is pushing ahead with the implementation of the principle of reciprocity against the nationals of some countries that are imposing stringent traveling conditions on Nigerian citizens on the bases of COVID-19 cases in the country.
“A comprehensive list of the affected countries will be released to the public alongside the COVID-19 protocols soon,” Nuhu said.
Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika had announced August 29 for the resumption of international flights after a four-month suspension from March 25, 2020 due to Covid-19.