The Director General, Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA, Captain Musa Nuhu says, any airline who operates below the regulatory requirements and illegally this harmattan season will be penalized.
The NCAA in a statement to all domestic airline operators had appealed to pilots and airline operators to exercise restraint if weather forecast by the Nigeria Meteorological Agency, NiMET is not favourable for flight operations especially due to poor visibility.
Addressing Journalists in Lagos, Captain Nuhu said, due to the season, there would be delays and cancelations of flights and if the weather goes beyond safety limits which are regulatory in nature no airline would operate.
“If any airline operates illegally and even if they operate below the the regulatory requirements and even if they operate safely, we are going to penalize them because that is risking the lives of passengers, am sure none of the airlines would do that because they are quite aware of the dangers involved”. Captain Musa Nuhu noted.
Captain Nuhu explained that, the airlines were aware of the dangers of taking such a risk and no matter how desperate passengers were to get to their destinations, they needed to get there safely and alive.
According to the NCAA boss, the airlines have responded positively to adhere strictly to the requirements at a meeting held with them recently.
“We have spoken with the airlines, they responded positively, they are professionals, the pilots are professionals, they will do the right thing, am sure they will do the right thing”. Captain Nuhu stated.
The NCAA has also alerted the traveling public that, if the weather is bad, the airspace maybe shut down by the Air Traffic Controllers to avoid jeopardizing the lives of passengers.
Reporting by Nosa Aituamen; editing by Adeniyi Bakare