FG Needs N25b To Fix Perimeter, Operational Fences In 22 Airports
The Federal Government (FG) requires at least N25 billion to construct perimeter and operational fences in all the 22 airports managed by the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) for the central government.
The General Manager, Corporate Communications, FAAN, Mr. Yakubu Dati said this in an interview at the agency’s headquarters at the Murtala Muhammed Airport(MMA), Lagos at the weekend.
He disclosed that a recent survey carried out by FAAN indicated that to completely fence the 22 Federal Government-owned airports, FAAN would need N25 billion.
According to Dati, each of the 22 airports is about 50 kilometre long and would require serious investments for all of them to be properly fenced in line with the International Civil Aviation Organisation(ICAO) recommended practices.
Apart from the four international airports in Lagos, Abuja, Kano and Port Harcourt that are partially fenced, 18 other airports owned by the Federal Government and managed by FAAN are not fenced, a situation, which has led to encroachments on the lands by communities close to the various airports.
Investigations showed that the 22 airports across the country occupy over 500 kilometres of land mass
ICAO security guidelines prescribe that all airports must be secured with double perimeter fences.
Dati however stated that there were other safety measures FAAN has taken in line with international best practice to boost security and safety within the nation’s airports.
He pointed out that the agency had introduced the perimeter patrol, built perimeter towers, which enables the Aviation Security(AVSEC), personnel and other security agencies to have a full overview of the airport environment and installed latest technologies in strategic locations to increase surveillance.
He revealed that most of the leakages observed in the past by analysts and other aviation stakeholders had been blocked by the authority, stressing that this had made it possible for FAAN to scale the United States Transportation Security Administration(TSA), security audit carried out earlier in the month at the Lagos Airport.
According to him, “It would be recalled that about two months ago, we invited a team from Airport Council International (ACI) to carry out security audit of our airports and they identified some gaps, which needed to be closed and we were able to close those gaps. That is why when TSA came calling about two weeks ago, we were given clean bill of health because all the loopholes have been closed.”
He continued, “Insider’s threat is another area that we are looking at. We profile anybody that works within the terminal or in the terminal in line with global standards. It is after passing that we issue them the On-Duty-Card(ODC0. Even at that, the ODC also have some levels of restrictions such that it is not every holder that has access to every part of the terminal. We have different levels and colours based on the level of clearance you have received.”
The FAAN image maker stated that airport as an enabler to the nation’s economy contributes about $1billion annually while also providing more than 300,000 jobs and that government would continue to ensure growth in the sector.
He assured airports users of absolute security and safety of humans, cargo and equipment at all times.