COVID-19: NCAA Asks Airlines To Board Travellers To Nigeria Without QR Code

(File photo) Muritala Muhammed International Airport

 

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has asked all foreign airlines operating in and out of Nigeria not to deny Nigerians boarding over their inability to show evidence of payment for the day-7 COVID-19 PCR test or to generate a paid QR code.

The Director-General of the NCAA, Capt. Musa Nuhu, announced this in a letter issued on Saturday to all airlines operating in and out of the country.

He said the decision was taken in view of the challenges some travellers to Nigeria experience while trying to fill their Health and Travel history into Nigeria’s International Travel portal (NITP).

According to Capt. Nuhu, the cumbersomeness of generating the PCR code after payment of the statutory fees has led to many travelers from Nigeria and into Nigeria being denied boarding by airlines.

“The Presidential Steering Committee on COVID-19 has been made aware of Challenges some travellers to Nigeria are experiencing while trying to fill their health and travel history into the Nigeria International Travel Portal.

“Airlines are hereby permitted to board any traveller to Nigeria who is either unable to pay for the repeat day-7 COVID-19 PCR test or Generate the paid QR code/permit to fly,” the letter read in part.

It added that such passengers will be required to make payment for the repeat day-7 COVID-19 PCR test at their destination airport in Nigeria.

 

 

NCAA To Commence Public Sensitisation For Air Travellers

FG Sacks Directors Of NCAA

 

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has said that it would in the coming weeks, commence public sensitisation to further enlighten air travelers on steps to take in case of flight delays or cancellations by airlines.

Director-General of NCAA, Capt. Musa Nuhu, said this in an interview with aviation journalists in Lagos at the weekend.

According to him, this would enable the agency respond appropriately in cases where their rights are trampled upon by airlines.

Capt. Nuhu also said that the law on 100 per cent refund on air tickets in cases of a three-hour delay is not novel to the Nigerian Civil Aviation Regulation (NCAR), stressing that it was gazetted by the Federal Government and has been in existence since 2015.

Before the 2015 amendment to the extant regulations, airlines were supposed to pay 100 per cent compensation to passengers after two hours of delay, but the regulatory agency amended it to three hours in order to accommodate the complaints of the indigenous airlines and in a bid to ensure fair play.

He, however, clarified that in the case of natural phenomenon, the airlines would not be sanctioned by the agency, describing it as a force majeure.

Speaking further, Capt. Nuhu noted that airlines were given Air Operators’ Certificates (AOCs) based on the fact that they would comply with civil aviation regulations.

He also maintained that once any of the carriers is found wanting, the agency would not hesitate to sanction such an airline accordingly.

Rainy Season: NCAA Cautions Pilots Over Hazardous Weather

PHOTO USED TO ILLUSTRATE STORY: An airplane arrives at the Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport, Abuja. PHOTO: Sodiq Adelakun/Channels TV

 

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has cautioned all pilots in the country over severe thunderstorms and other hazardous weather conditions which hamper flight operations, especially during the rainy season.

According to the agency, the warning is a follow-up to the Advisory Circular addressed to all Pilots and Airline Operators and signed by the Director-General of NCAA, Captain Musa Nuhu.

The circular signed on Wednesday by the DG of the agency is coming on the advent of the Seasonal Climate Prediction (SCP) released by the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET) for the year 2021.

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NIMET has predicted early/late March as the commencement of the rainy season in the Southern states while late April/June 2021 is the commencement of the rainy season in the Central and Northern parts of Nigeria.

Consequently, the weather advisory circular is necessary to bring forth the evolving weather information associated with the commencement of the rainy season and the effects on the safety and efficiency of flight operations; and to elicit the cooperation of the following stakeholders to ensure safe air transportation at all times.

“Therefore, Pilots, Operators, and Air Traffic Controllers Pilots are directed to observe series of responsibilities enumerated below forthwith: Air Traffic Controllers may temporarily close the airspace when any of the conditions in (1) are observed or forecast by NIMET; Flight Crews/Operators and Air Traffic Controllers (ATC) to ensure adherence to published aerodrome weather minima; Pilots to exercise maximum restraint whenever adverse weather is observed or forecast by NIMET; and Pilots/Flight Crew members to obtain adequate departure, en-route and destination weather information and briefing from NIMET Aerodrome Meteorological Offices prior to flight operations,” the circular read in part.

The Authority, therefore, enjoins all passengers to exercise patience and understanding during this period of heavy downpour and observe strict compliance.

NCAA Suspends Azman Air Operations

 

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has suspended Azman Air flight operations.

This was announced in a statement signed on Tuesday by NCAA Director-General, Musa Nuhu, and titled, “NCAA Suspends Azman Air Operations With Immediate Effect.”

Nuhu in the statement added that the suspension of the Air Operations is to enable the Authority to conduct an audit of the airline.

READ ALSO: WTO DG Visits CBN Talks About Embracing Digital Economy, Exiting Recession

“Following series of incidents involving Azman Air Boeing 737 Aircraft, the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has pursuant to Section 35 (2) of the Civil Aviation Act, 2006 and Part 1.3.3.3 (A) of the Nigeria Civil Aviation Regulations (Nig.CARs) 2015, suspended the operations of all the Boeing 737 Aircraft in the Fleet of Azman Air Services Limited, with effect from March 15, 2021.

“The suspension is to enable the Authority to conduct an audit of the airline to determine the root cause(s) of the incidents, and recommend corrective actions to forestall re-occurrence,” the statement read in part.

The NCAA said it regrets the inconvenience the action may cause to the public, “particularly to Azman air passengers but the need to ensure the safety of Air Transport and protect the public interest, cannot be compromised.

“The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority will continue to ensure compliance to its regulations in the interest of safety and will view any violation(s) seriously.”

Azman Air in a tweet also confirmed the suspension of all its flight operations.

“Due to our strong stance on safety, @AzmanAir will be undergoing an audit of its safety processes as supervised by the regulators.

“In this regard, all our operations is hereby suspended. We are on our toes to restore operations within a short period. Kindly accept our apologies,” the airline announced on its official handle @AzmanAir.

 

NCAA Lifts Ban On Boeing 737 Max Aircraft

In this file photo taken on December 9, 2020, a Boeing 737 MAX of Brazilian airline Gol lands at Salgado Filho airport in Porto Alegre, Brazil. SILVIO AVILA / AFP
In this file photo taken on December 9, 2020, a Boeing 737 MAX of Brazilian airline Gol lands at Salgado Filho airport in Porto Alegre, Brazil. SILVIO AVILA / AFP

 

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has announced the lifting of the ban on Boeing 737 Max Aircraft in the Nigerian Airspace, following the two accidents involving the Boeing 737 Max Aircraft.

According to a communique signed by Capt. Musa Nuhu the Director-General of the NCAA, the approval is effective 12th February 2021.

Consequent to the two accidents of Lion Air Flight 610, an Indonesia flight that crashed into the Java Sea 13mins after takeoff, and Ethiopian Airlines flight 320, which crashed six minutes after takeoff, the Honourable Minister of Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika pronounced the ban on the operations of the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft in the Nigerian airspace.

On the 18th November 2020, the NCAA said it received a Continued Airworthiness Notification to the International Community (CANIC) CAN-2020-24 advising it of the United States Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA’s) ongoing continued operational safety activities related to returning Boeing Model 737-8 and 737-9 (737 MAX) aircraft service.

READ ALSO: Seven Killed As Military Aircraft Crashes In Abuja Airport

This, however, made the FAA issue a final rule/Airworthiness Directive (AD) that mandated the following actions for Boeing 737 MAX aircraft which includes;

Install new flight control computer software and new 737 MAX display system software;

Incorporate certain Airplane Flight Manual flight crew operating procedures, Modify horizontal stabiliser trim wire routing installations;

Conduct an angle of attack sensor system test; and

Conduct an operation readiness flight.

NCAA  says it recognizes that a Joint Authority Technical Review (JATR) that comprised of International Aviation Authorities such as the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), Transport Canada (TC) and the Singapore Civil Aviation Authority amongst others carried out a joint review of the Boeing 737 MAX safety system alongside FAA and NASA.

In the light of this, the FAA has released documents on Boeing 737 Flight Standardization Board Report, revision 17, identifying special pilot training for the 737 MAX and Safety Alert for Operators.

NCAA further noted that it recognizes the joint review of the Boeing 737 Max Safety System and came up with the following actions required of all foreign and domestic operators:

All intending domestic operators are required to work with the Boeing Company and NCAA for the Aircraft Type Certificate Acceptance Programme in order to have the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft registered in Nigeria and issued with a Standard Certificate of Airworthiness.

All foreign air operators that intend to operate the Boeing 737 MAX aircraft into Nigeria must submit evidence of compliance with the FAA AD 2020-24-02

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority will continue to ensure strict compliance to Safety Regulations as violation[s] will be viewed seriously.

FG Suspends Emirates Flights From Nigeria

In this file photo taken on June 26, 2015 an Emirates Airbus A380 aircraft sits on the tarmac at the Bandaranaike International Airport in Katunayake. Ishara S. KODIKARA / AFP
File photo of an Emirates Airbus A380 aircraft. PHOTO: Ishara S. KODIKARA / AFP

 

The Federal Government has placed a 72-hour suspension on outbound Emirates flights from Nigeria.

This is contained in a circular issued on February 4 by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA).

The circular states that the suspension followed a violation of guidelines placed by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19.

According to the circular signed by NCAA director-general, Musa Nuhu, the airline has been airlifting passengers from Nigeria using rapid antigen tests conducted by laboratories not approved by regulatory authorities.

READ ALSO: EU Regulator Clears Boeing 737 MAX For Flights

“Based on the foregoing and to enable the Nigerian government to put in place the needed infrastructure and logistics for COVID-19 RDT testing for departing passengers, the PTF has directed that Emirates Airlines should either accept passengers without RDT pending when the infrastructure and logistics are put in place or suspend its flights to and from Nigeria until such a time when the required infrastructure and logistics are fully established and implemented.

“Emirates Airlines has not been in compliance with the two options given by the PTF as records obtained from Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) indicates that Emirates Airlines operated the flights from both Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos and Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport, Abuja” the circular read in part.

The NCAA said additional sanctions would be imposed on Emirates Airlines for the violations of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 and COVID-19 protocols.

It also noted that the airline will be informed as to when to resume operations.

COVID-19 Protocols: NCAA Issues Warnings To Airlines, Passengers From UK, South Africa

File photo of passengers at the Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport, Abuja following the resumption of international flights on September 7, 2020. Photo: Sodiq Adelakun/ Channels Television.

 

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has issued warnings to foreign airline operators and passengers operating into Nigeria from the UK and South Africa.

The NCAA Director-General, Musa Nuhu, issued warnings in a letter containing new protocols on Sunday in Abuja.

According to the letter, failure of the airlines from UK and South Africa to adhere strictly to the new travel rules will attract a penalty of $3,500 for each passenger boarded.

“The Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 over the weekend issued new travel rules for passengers on direct flights from the UK and South Africa due to the variance of coronavirus discovered recently in these two countries.

READ ALSO: South Korea Detects First COVID-19 Variant Cases

“The penalty is a fine of $3,500 for each passenger boarded and who fails to meet the new travel measures recently announced by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19,” the letter read in part.

The NCAA also notes that airlines will bear the burden of returning non-Nigerian defaulting passengers to point of embarkation for non-compliance to the new rules.

Punitive measures shall also be taken against airlines that are non-compliant. These punitive measures include but not limited to the following:

“(i) Airlines shall be fines $3,500 (Three thousand five hundred dollars) for each defaulting passenger.

(ii)Airlines may be required to return non-Nigerian defaulting passengers to point of embarkation.

(iii) Repeated non-compliance by any airline will lead to the suspension of the airline’s approval/permit to fly into the country.”

Also, for the two countries, passengers must present the following documents in order to be allowed to board their flight to Nigeria.

“Pre-departure “PERMIT TO FLY/QR code“generated from the Nigeria International Travel Portal (https://nitp.ncdc.gov.ng) showing evidence of payment for the post-arrival day 7 COVID-19 PCR test and;

“Documentary evidence of a “NEGATIVE COVID-19“ PCR result done within 96 hours (4 days) of boarding from a verifiable laboratory or health facility.”

Nuhu added that passengers would be received and processed separately by the Public Health Authority on arrival in Nigeria.

The NCAA boss further said that all passengers would be required to self-isolate for seven days after arrival followed by a COVID-19 PCR test.

He stated that a dedicated register of arriving passengers from the United Kingdom and South Africa would be opened for enhanced surveillance and active enforcement of the protocols.

NCAA Advises Pilots, Airline Operators On Severe Weather

FG Sacks Directors Of NCAA
A logo of the NCAA.

 

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has advised pilots and airline operators on severe dust haze/fog phenomenon prevalent in Nigerian airports.

A statement by the aviation authority states that the adverse weather condition expected to subsist from October in the far North; November over the North Central; and December over the Southern part of the country. In addition, early morning fog may also be experienced in the months ahead especially along with the coastal areas in the South.

“With the issuance of this circular signed by the Director-General, Capt Musa Nuhu, the NCAA-AEROMET-29 of August 2020 is accordingly cancelled.

“This weather advisory circular is necessary to bring forth the evolving weather information to the attention of all stakeholders who need to perform their roles”.

Therefore, to ensure safe and efficient flight operations during this period, Pilots, Operators and Air Traffic Controllers Pilots are directed to observe a series of responsibilities enumerated below forthwith:

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(I.) Flight Crews/Operators and Air Traffic Controllers (ATC) shall be conversant with each aerodrome weather minima and ensure strict adherence to the requirements;

(II) Air Traffic Controllers may temporarily close airspace when hazardous weather conditions such as heavy fog or severe dust haze reducing the visibility to below airport operating minimal are observed or forecast by Nimet;

(III.) Pilots/Flight Crew Members shall obtain adequate departure, en-route and destination weather information and briefing from Nimet Aerodrome Offices prior to flight operations; and

(IV.) Pilots shall exercise maximum restraint whenever adverse weather is observed or forecast by Nimet and briefed passengers accordingly. Travelling public are however urged to exercise restraint and show understanding in this yuletide month as flights may be delayed or cancelled on account of weather situations.

The regulatory authority has called for strict compliance to this Advisory Circular as violation would be viewed seriously.

International Flights Resumption: Incoming Airlines To Carry 200 Passengers Per Trip – FG

 

The Federal Government has issued a schedule for the partial resumption of international flights, after months of suspension due to the outbreak of COVID-19 in the country.

A tweet by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) on Saturday showed that the flight schedule was signed by its Director-General, Captain Musa Nuhu.

In the document dated September 4, 2020, the aviation agency stated that a maximum of 200 passengers per incoming flights would be allowed into the country.

It explained that the limitation was due to the limited number of approved incoming passengers at 1,280 per airport on a daily basis.

 

The schedule, which was addressed to all aviation stakeholders and foreign airline operators flying into the country, however, stated that there was no limit on the number of outgoing passengers from the country.

It read, “Kindly note due to the limited number of approved incoming passengers (1,280) allowed daily per each airport, it is not possible to accommodate the requested schedule of airlines.

“However, over the next few weeks as the number of allowed incoming passengers is increased, additional flight frequencies will be allocated to airlines in addition to accommodating any airline that meets the requirements for resumption of flight operations into Nigeria.”

“The approved schedule is based on a maximum number of 200 passengers per each incoming flight to Nigeria. There is no limit on the number of outgoing passengers,” the memo added.

READ ALSO: Russia Presents COVID-19 Vaccine To Nigeria

The NCAA stressed that each airline operator was entitled to only one frequency on an approved day of operation, irrespective of the capacity of aircraft utilised.

Giving a breakdown of airlines, the NCAA announced that an average of six airlines would operate in each of the airports allowed to function at the initial stage.

See the full schedule released by the NCAA below:

DAYLAGOS (LOS)ABUJA (ABV)
MONDAYTurkish, Air Senegal, Virgin Atlantic, Qatar, AWA, Emirates, British AirwaysBritish Airways, Emirates, Ethiopian, ASKY, Air Cote d’ivoire
TUESDAYBritish Airways, Egypt Air, Ethiopian, ASKY, Kenya Airways, Air Cote d’IvoireBritish Airways, Emirates, Ethiopian, AWA, Turkish

 

WEDNESDAYDelta, Emirates, Air Senegal, Ethiopian, Kenya Airways, MEABritish Airways, Emirates, Ethiopian, ASKY, Air Cote d’Ivoire, AWA
THURSDAYBritish Airways, Delta, Egypt Air, Virgin Atlantic, Ethiopian, Qatar, AWABritish Airways, Egypt Air, Emirates, AWA, Ethiopian, Turkish, Air Cote d’Ivoire
FRIDAYAir Senegal, ASKY, Emirates, Turkish, AWA, Kenya Airways, MEABritish Airways, Emirates, Ethiopian, ASKY, MEA
SATURDAYBritish Airways, Delta, Qatar, AWA, Kenya Airways, MEA, Air Cote d’IvoireBritish Airways, Egypt Air, Emirates, Ethiopian, AWA, MEA, Turkish
SUNDAYDelta, Air Senegal, Virgin Atlantic, Emirates, AWA, Kenya Airways, TurkishBritish Airways, Egypt Air, Emirates, Ethiopian, ASKY, Air Cote d’Ivoire

 

FG Approves Restructuring Of NCAA, Cuts Directorates To Six

FG Sacks Directors Of NCAA
A logo of the NCAA.

 

The Federal Government has approved the restructuring of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), the safety oversight agency of the aviation industry in the country.

NCAA Director-General and Chief Executive Officer, Captain Musa Nuhu, disclosed this in a statement on Wednesday

He explained that the restructuring affected the directorates of the agency – the major organs of the agency.

Nuhu revealed that the directorates which used to been nine have now been cut down to six.

He listed the new and retained directorates to include the Directorate of Airworthiness Standards (DAWS), Directorate of Operations, Licensing and Training (DOLT), and Directorate of Air Transport Regulations (DATR).

Others are Directorate of Aerodrome and Airspace Standards (DAAS), Directorate of Finance and Accounts (DFA), and the Directorate of Human Resources and Administration (DHR&A).

The NCAA boss noted that the Directorate of Consumer Protection (DCP) and Directorate of General Aviation (DGA) have been phased out.

He added that while the former was merged with the DATR, the latter was subsumed under the Directorate of Airworthiness Standards.

According to Nuhu, the government has appointed two new directors to take charge of the Directorates of Airworthiness Standards (DAWS) and Operations, Licensing and Training (DOLT).

“The newly appointed directors, who are aviation professions with several decades of industry experience in their areas of expertise in the aviation industry, are Engineer Kayode Ajiboye for DAWS and Captain Elisha Bahago for DOLT,” the statement said.

The NCAA boss stated that the approved restructuring was aimed at repositioning the agency for effective and efficient service delivery.

He said it was also to entrench a robust safety oversight system, in line with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) standards and recommended practices, while enabling the regulatory body to resolve current and emerging challenges facing the industry.

FG Shifts Resumption Of International Flights To September 5

A security official and medical personnel move around at the Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport in Abuja. Photo: Sodiq Adelakun / Channels TV
A security official and medical personnel move around at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja. Photo: Sodiq Adelakun / Channels TV

 

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) on Thursday said the resumption of international flights has now been shifted to September 5.

The earlier date had been August 29.

Director-General of the NCAA, Musa Shuaibu Nuhu, revealed the news during a Presidential Task Force COVID-19 briefing in Abuja.

He said while airlines and airports were ready to operate, other non-aviation logistics prompted the one-week extension.

“We have other non-aviation logistics we are still working on, mostly the COVID-19 protocol tests and online platform,” he said. “We need to get this ready.”

Mr Nuhu described September 5 as a “sacrosanct date”, noting that “the initial announcement was anytime from the 29th.”

“In due course, we will be announcing the protocols for the resumptions and we will be giving further details,” he said. “Hopefully early next week, we will release this.”

Nigeria started to restrict international flights in March as part of efforts to restrict the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

The shutdown, which included inter-state travel and closure of public places and schools, contributed to the decline of the country’s economic growth.

In July, the country resumed domestic flight operations with international flights scheduled to follow.

The PTF Chairman, Boss Mustapha, during the briefing on Thursday, said he hopes the reopening of international flights will help to re-open the economy.

NCAA Issues Weather Advisory Circular, Calls For Strict Compliance

FG Sacks Directors Of NCAA

 

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has issued weather Advisory Circular (AC) to stakeholders, calling for strict compliance.

The objective of this circular is to bring pilots and operators up to date on the occurrence of thunderstorm phenomenon over Nigerian airports since the onset of the rainy season in the country.

The statistics from the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NIMET) so far indicated that most of the airports have recorded quite a number of thunderstorms between March and July 2020. In the month of July 2020, NIMET data indicate the following number of thunderstorm occurrence: Abuja (23), Ikeja (8), Kano (24), Port Harcourt (11), Owerri (17) and Benin (11). In the same month, gustiness range between 22Kt and 42Kt at the listed airports.

In the circular signed by NCAA Director-General/Chief Executive Officer, Capt. Musa Nuhu, the purpose of this AC is to bring forth the evolving weather information which could adversely affect safe and efficient flight operations post Covid-19 pandemic.

Severe thunderstorms and many other hazardous weather phenomena such as severe turbulence, microburst, low-level wind shear and hail events that could affect the safety of flight operations are possible during the rainy season; therefore, all stakeholders are expected to perform their roles as stated below in order to ensure the safety of flight operations, the AC said.

By this circular:

Air Traffic controllers may temporarily close airspace when hazardous weather conditions such as severe thunderstorms squall lines microburst or low-level wind shear are observed or forecast by NIMET.

Flight Crews/Operators and Air Traffic Controllers (ATC) shall ensure adherence to aerodrome weather minima;

Pilots shall exercise maximum restraint whenever adverse weather is observed or forecast by NIMET;

Pilot / Flight Crew Members shall obtain adequate departure, en-route and destination weather information and briefing from NIMET Aerodrome Meteorological offices prior to flight operations.

“The Authority will expect strict compliance to this circular from all stakeholders and violation would be viewed seriously”.