FG concessions Lagos, Abuja airports
Safety regulations earn local airlines zero-crash in 2016, say experts
The Federal Government has approved the concessioning of two of its national airports, the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos and Nnamdi Azikiwe Airport, Abuja.
Vice President Yemi Osinbajo stated this in Abuja at the fifth edition of the presidential quarterly business forum organised by the Presidential Enabling Business Environment Committee (PEBEC) in the old Banquet Hall of the Presidential Villa.
Osinbajo, who did not disclose the identities of the concessionaires, said: “I am pleased to say that the Federal Executive Council (FEC) has approved the concessioning of the Lagos and Abuja airports.”
He noted that the Federal Government’s concern on ease of doing business in Nigeria was to ensure a general overhaul of the business environment, which he said, involved the concessioning of all airports in the country.
Osinbajo who submitted that a partnership with the private sector operators was a decision in the right direction, pointed out that it also serves as the forum for the government to receive both criticisms and suggestions from the private sector.
He also said it had become imperative to improve the capacity of government agencies which regulate business activities.In another development, the zero accident score recorded by Nigerian aviation industry was yesterday hinged on enhanced safety regulations implemented by airlines and their regulators.
The record was described as a feat and good omen for the sector that had been plagued by one-too-many fatal crashes in the past.Guest Speaker at the Aviation Day session at the ongoing 13th Akwaaba Travel and Tour Market in Lagos on Monday, Gbenga Olowo, said statistics availed by the International Air Transport Association (IATA) for 2016 showed great safety improvement in the local industry in particular and Africa in general, compared to records of the past.
Olowo, who is also the President of Aviation Safety Round Table Initiative (ASRTI), noted that whereas a total of 3.8 billion travelled on 40.4 million flights globally in 2016, the number of total accidents, fatal accidents and fatalities all declined in five years average.He observed that compared to 2.5 per cent five-year average (2011-2015), the chances of crash happening is now 0.39 in Africa, compare to 0.35 global average.
Chief Executive Officer of the Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB), represented by the spokesperson, Tunji Oketunbi, added that the feat was an effect of changes introduced following 2005/2006 crashes.
He said the achievement was due to collaboration of all stakeholders, who did their best to keep the industry safe and crash-free.General Manager of British Airways in West African region, Kola Olayinka, urged the airlines to continue on the safety path to keep their business running, saying that a single crash is enough, not only to rubbish the record, but also to kill an airline.