SA, UK: NCAA To Fine Airlines $3,500 For Each Defaulting Passenger Of COVID-19 Protocols

The Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has stated that it would fine airlines $3,500 for each passenger and may be required to return non-Nigerian defaulting passengers to point of embarkation for non compliance to Nigerian government’s rules as it concerns   the United Kingdom and South Africa.

It is coming 24 hours before the. Commencement of new COVID-19  travel protocols begins tomorrow ‘December 28 2020.

NCAA also stated that it would  declared that repeated non-compliance by any airline would lead to a suspension of the airlines’ approval or permit to fly into  Nigeria .

These were  contained in an All Operations Letter (AOL) signed by the Director General of NCAA Capt. Musa Nuhu and addressed   to Country  and Accountable Managers  of domestic and foreign airlines flying into Nigeria  by NCAA.

NCAA stated in the AOL that passengers flying from the United Kingdom and South Africa must present pre-departure permit to fly/ QR Code generated  from Nigeria international travel portal and a documentary evidence of a Negative COVID-19 PCR test result done within 96 hours of boarding.

The regulatory body said that government through the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 has reviewed the quarantine protocols to include that passengers originating from both UK and SA would be received and processed separately by public health authorities.

All the travel rules, NCAA said would be applicable to both scheduled and non scheduled passengers from both countries.

“With the recent spike in cases of COVID -19 in Nigeria and the reported transmissible new variant of the virus in the United Kingdom and South Africa, the Nigerian government through Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 has reviewed the quarantine protocols.

“ 1. Passengers originating from  United Kingdom (UK) and South Africa: For flights and passengers originating from United Kingdom (UK) and South Africa with final destination being Nigeria the following shall apply ,” the AOL reads.

It continued, “Passengers must present the following two documents in order to be allowed to board their flights to Nigeria: (a) Pre-departure permitto 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 (b) Documentary evidence of a Negative COVID-19 PCR result done within 96 hours(4days) of boarding from verifiable laboratory or health facility.

“On arrival in Nigeria, passengers will be received and processed separately by public health authorities

“All passengers will be required to self isolate for 7 days after arrival followed by COVID-19 PCR test.

“Passengers with a post arrival Negative COVID-19 PCR result can exit self isolation and further management.

” A dedicated register of arriving passengers from the United Kingdom and South Africa will be opened and enhanced for surveillance and active enforcement of these protocols.”

The rules NCAA said apply to all airlines with passengers originating from the United Kingdom and South Africa regardless of transit arrangements,adding that the new rules are applicable to scheduled and non scheduled flights from the United Kingdom and South Africa.

It noted in the AOL that the earlier quarantine protocol which became effective from September 18, 2020 shall continue to subsist for flights originating from other countries except for the validity of the Pre-departure PCR test result which will now be 96 hours from date of departure.

It hinted that airlines that fails to comply with the pandemic  protocols would be punished.

” Punitive measures shall be taken against airlines who fail to comply with this All Operators Letters.  The punitive measures shall 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.”

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