The Director General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Captain Musa Nuhu, has said that the federal government will on Tuesday write a protest letter to the governments of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the Netherlands over the ill-treatment of Nigerians by Emirates Airline an KLM Royal Dutch Airlines.
Nuhu gave the updates at the PTF briefing in relation to the saga between the two airlines and the country after KLM and Emirates stopped flying passengers out of Nigeria in the last two weeks in protest against the federal government’s refusal of their request for Rapid Antigen Test for passengers four hours before departure.
The NCAA DG said at the time Nigeria was not ready for the logistics, which prompted the airlines to stop their flights, a development that he said, resulted in many passengers failing to catch their flights.
“NCAA had discussions with the airlines on the unfavorable treatment of Nigerians and they are certainly going to compensate passengers whose flights were cancelled or delayed on short notice. Discussions are still ongoing with the airlines and it involves the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and NCAA to resolve the issues. Letters will go out to the governments of these countries Tuesday morning (today) and to the airlines with a deadline to give further information to help PTF resolve it once and for all and in the very near future,” he said.
NCAA added that it has also written the airlines operating West African regional flights on how to deal with the fresh outbreak of Ebola in Guinea and Liberia.
The civil aviation authority advised the airlines to be cautious on the kind of passengers to board and the symptoms to look for in addition to measures and procedures to take in case they have a suspected case of Ebola aboard the flight, which include informing the authorities so that proper preventive arrangements can be made.
Also the Deputy National Incident Manager, on COVID-19, Dr. Hassan Hassan has also announced the immediate coming into effect of new modifications on the phase three eased on lockdown, which began on June 1, 2020.
The modifications, according to Hassan, include the maintenance of the current nationwide curfew from 12 am to 4 am, restriction on mass gathering outside the work places, funerals to be attended by no more than 50 persons, places of worship not to exceed 50 per cent of capacity and maintenance of mandatory boarding requirements for international passengers arriving from the UK and South Africa.
Others include the closure of bars and night clubs until further notice and avoiding congestion in government offices by allowing only essential staff from Grade Level 12 and above to come to work until March 31, 2021.
Olawale Ajimotokan in Abuja