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NAMA receives spare parts for radar operations

The Managing Director of NAMA, Capt. Fola Akinkuotu, confirmed the development to newsmen on Sunday in Lagos.



By Adekunle Williams and Solomon Asowata
Lagos, Feb. 3, 2019 (NNN) The Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) has taken delivery of consignment of critical spare parts for the continuous service and operation of the Total Radar Coverage of Nigeria (TRACON).

The Managing Director of NAMA, Capt. Fola Akinkuotu, confirmed the development to newsmen on Sunday in Lagos.

Akinkuotu said that the consignment, which was cleared at the Apapa Port in Lagos from Thales Group, in France include MES1 1400A power supply modules, control units and other critical units.

He explained that they would be used by NAMA engineers to effect repairs on any of the nine TRACON installations across the country for optimal functioning of the system.

Akinkuotu disclosed that apart from the spares already received, another consignment of spares have landed Apapa port and was being presently cleared.

He said other consignments were already being shipped to Nigeria from France, adding that payment had already been made for all consignments.

The NAMA boss also revealed that TRACON would undergo a total reconditioning process in order to meet the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) standard.

He described this process as “a sort of Turn-around-maintenance which is to be carried out by the equipment manufacturer, Thales Group”

Akinkuotu noted that the acquisition of spares for TRACON was in line with the agency’s decision to be proactive in maintaining the nation’s radar facility.

“Availability of spares will ensure that parts of the radar equipment will be readily available whenever and wherever they are needed.

“There are some that will immediately be used for replacement while others will be kept in the warehouse, pending when they will be needed,” he added.

Akinkuotu also stated that NAMA engineers had the capacity to undertake the maintenance of the TRACON facility and had always done so in the past. (NNN)
Edited by Mustapha Sumaila/Ismail Abdulaziz


COVID-19: Women aviators donate face masks, hand sanitisers to NAMA



Professional women aviators,  under the aegis of International Aviation Women’s Association (IAWA) in Nigeria, have donated face masks and hand sanitisers to the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA).

Dr Anastasia Gbem, NAMA Legal Adviser, presented the items on behalf of IAWA at the agency’s headquarters in Lagos on Wednesday.

Gbem said the contributions by IAWA was to help toward flattening the coronavirus curve, especially in the aviation sector.

She said that as working mothers who had put in several years in different areas of specialisation, their intervention was inspired by the fact that the health of personnel in the aviation industry remained central to the growth and advancement of the industry.

Gbem said that as a global organisation of professional women, advancing their careers, IAWA also promoted ‘Next Generation’ professionals.

IAWA has a strong affiliation and has been networking with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO), International Air Transport Association (IATA), Boeing and other critical stakeholders in the sector toward moving the aviation industry forward,” she said.

Receiving the items on behalf of the agency, the Managing Director of NAMA, Capt. Fola Akinkuotu, recalled that from the inception of aviation, the contributions of women in the sector had been legendary.

Akinkuotu said that women had broken several barriers and made useful impact and contributions which had remained invaluable to the growth and development of the industry.

He appreciated the gesture on behalf of the management and gave an assurance that the items would be judiciously used for the benefit of staff in the different directorates and departments of the agency. .

Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Adeleye Ajayi (NAN)




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Panama’s Copa Airlines planning to retire Boeing 737-700 fleet



Panama’s Copa Airlines said on Thursday that it is planning to retire early its fleet of 14 older Boeing 737-700 NG planes, the latest carrier to do away with planes due to the coronavirus crisis.

Copa said it will focus on a leaner fleet composed mainly of its Boeing 737-800 NG planes instead.

Copa also has some new Boeing 737 MAX 9 planes.

But those have been grounded worldwide since last year, after two deadly crashes.


Edited By: Abdulfatah Babatunde (NAN)

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Lockdown ease: NAMA MD tasks staff on safety procedures



The Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) has cautioned its staff to ensure full compliance with the directives and safety guidelines issued by the Federal Government ahead of the easing of the COVID-19 lockdown on Monday.

Its Managing Director, Capt. Fola Akinkuotu, gave the advice in a statement issued on Sunday in Lagos.

Akinkuotu said the workers should adhere strictly to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) on COVID-19 preventive measures, including social distancing, regular washing of and/ or sanitising of hands and wearing of face masks.

“While the health and wellbeing of workers is of utmost importance to management, a lot needs to be done by the workers to ensure they remain safe in the face of the Covid-19 pandemic which is still very much in our midst.

“We are also assuring our staff that the agency has put in place procedures and measures that would guarantee their safety in the work place,” he said.

Akinkuotu noted that the battle against Covid-19 was a collective one and they must all join hands with the federal government to triumph at the end of the day.

Edited By: Folasade Adeniran/Oluwole Sogunle (NAN)

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5.4-magnitude quake hits 100 km WNW of Namatanai, Papua New Guinea — USGS




An earthquake with a magnitude of 5.4 jolted 100km WNW of Namatanai, Papua New Guinea on Monday, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said.

The epicenter, with a depth of 10.0 km, was initially determined to be at 3.276 degrees south latitude and 151.6175 degrees east longitude.

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Panama, Mongolia each confirm first COVID-19 case 



Panama and Mongolia have each confirmed their first case of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19).

President Laurentino Cortizo of Panama said on Twitter on Tuesday that his country was able to identify it early after applying all the protocols of the World Health Organisation (WHO).

“After applying all the protocols of the World Health Organisation we can confirm the first COVID-19 case in our country … We have identified it early, so we may remain calm,” Cortizo wrote on Twitter.

Panama’s Health Minister Rosario Turner said at a news conference that the infected person was a 40-year-old woman who had sought medical assistance after she suffered fever upon her return from Spain.

Her condition is assessed as stable.

In Mongolia, the first case of infection was confirmed after a patient, who is a French citizen was tested, the Mongolian Montsame news agency reported on Tuesday, citing the health minister.

According to the media outlet, the Mongolian State Emergency Commission convened a meeting on Tuesday morning over the first COVID-19 case reported in the country.

“A team of professionals of the National Center for Communicable Diseases has been sent to Dornogobi aimag (province).

“The health state of the French national is relatively stable.

“Despite the recommendation for 14-day self-quarantine from medics upon his fever, the citizen has gone outside, ignoring the recommendation,” the health minister said during the meeting, as quoted by the media outlet.

Two Mongolian nationals who were in contact with the tourist have also left Dornogovi.

According to the commission, they will all be held responsible for violating quarantine rules.

So far, the number of people who have contracted the coronavirus disease globally has exceeded 114,000, and over 4,000 died.

The virus has spread to more than 100 countries since emerging in China in December, according to Johns Hopkins University.


Edited By: Emmanuel Yashim

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Sen. Nnamani urges FG to reduce import duties for intending investors



Sen. Ken Nnamani, former board Chairman, Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC), has urged the Federal Government to reduce import duties for investors willing to invest in Nigeria.

Nnamani made the call on Tuesday in Abuja during a meeting between ICRC and Cornivus Foundation, an international consortium of financiers based in Switzerland.

He said the meeting was in furtherance of the group’s desire to develop a holistic interconnected backbone in Nigeria.

According to  Nnamani, the investors could also be enticed with tax holidays.

“If the affected investors can make a serious case for low import duties,  I am sure the Federal Government would be considerate enough to lower import duty and grant them tax holidays as part of incentives to lure them in,” he said.

He added that investors could also be enticed by making the mode of entry easy for them through the Ease of Doing Business strategy.

“If they apply for license or permit, you simplify it by having a one-stop shop for private sector, almost everything that is required to do business if they can get it at one place, it is better than running up and down.

“There is more money in the private sector than the public sector and Public Private Partnerships (PPP) seeks to deploy private sector money for public service delivery.

“This is done in a manner that fulfills the public service obligations of the government while also satisfying expectations of the private sector,” he said.

According to Nnamani, the ultimate objective of ICRC is to ease pressure on public budget by leveraging private sector funding for the development of critical physical, social infrastructure and for general public delivery.

Mr Chidi Izuwah, the Director-General, ICRC, said he was glad the initiative was coming to Nigeria as it would transform the nation.

“Imagine on the route one corridor, a highway running from Akwa Ibom to Katsina across the span of Nigeria and literally dividing Nigeria into two, which means every Nigerian is only two seconds away from that.

“Then you put in the 5G network, railway and energy, that is the Nigeria we dream of and one everybody wants, one which is infrastructure sufficient.

“So we must do everything to support initiatives like this and the private sector to deliver on this,” he said.

Mr Dominique Menoud, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Cornivus Foundation, said the organisation would invest 150 billion dollars into different projects in Nigeria and reinvest 25 per cent of its profit.

Menoud, also a board member of Nigeria Backbone Transportation Foundation, said Nigeria had enormous possibilities that were yet to be tapped.

“From a financial and investment point of view Nigeria represents the tremendous opportunity not only to make money but to contribute to mankind,” he said.

Mr Henry Owonka, Board Member, Nigeria Backbone Transportation Foundation, said the goal was to continue to engage with the Federal Government in delivering on infrastructure that were up to standard globally and were competitive.

He added that such PPP projects would also allow foreign investors come into the country, do business and ultimately create jobs for the people.

According to him, the only goal outside doing business of such magnitude was to improve the standards of living of the people.

Mr Kasim Mutallab, Commissioner of Finance, Katsina State, said the State Government was very excited with the road and rail projects ending in Katsina.

“It will help create employment and generate more revenue for the state; so we are very pleased.

“We are ready to provide the necessary land for the corridors that the rail lines and the road will pass through and we are ready to give all the necessary permits to ensure the success of this project,” Muttallab said.

The Nigeria News Agency reports that Cornivus Foundation through PPP would construct roads and railways that would run from Akwa Ibom to Katsina State, amid other projects.

Edited By: Kamal Tayo Oropo/Ese E.  Ekama


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NAMA commissions CAT3 ILS in Lagos, Abuja airports 



The Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) says it has commissioned its newly installed Category 3 Instrument Landing System (CAT3 ILS) at Runway 18 Right, at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos.

Capt. Fola Akinkuotu, Managing Director of NAMA, in a statement on Sunday in Lagos, said the agency had also commissioned CAT3 ILS at Runway 22, at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja.

Akinkuotu said the commissioning of the newly installed DVOR (Doppler Very High Frequency Omni-Directional Radio Range) in Lagos was successfully carried out just as routine flight calibration had also been carried out on Runway 18 Left in Lagos.

Akinkuotu said a Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) to this effect had been disseminated.

He said calibration of navigational aids in other locations across the country was in progress to ensure all navigational aids in Nigeria that are due for calibration were covered.

“In spite of initial hitches, it is gratifying to note that Runway 18R in Lagos has been certified for CAT 3 just as Runway 22 in Abuja with the newly acquired calibration aircraft by the aviation ministry.

“Both facilities are now fully operational, while pledging a timely calibration of navigational facilities going forward,’’ he said.

Akinkuotu said that the availability of flight calibration aircraft would ensure that NAMA was able to carry out calibration as and when due.

Edited By: Tayo Ikujuni/Wale Ojetimi





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Reps to investigate FAAN, NAMA over non-installation of visibility equipment 



The House of Representatives has directed its Committee on Aviation to investigate non-installation of Instrument Landing System (ILS) and other supporting equipment in airports across the country.

The decision followed a motion of Urgent Public Importance moved by Rep. Wale Raji (APC-Lagos) during plenary presided over by Speaker Femi Gbajabiamila on Tuesday.

The ILS works as a signal navigation aid that guides pilots when landing in low visibility.

The agencies to be investigated were the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) and the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA).

The motion was tagged “Urgent Need to Complete the Installation and Upgrade of Landing Equipment at the Nation’s Airports to Enhance Safety of our Airspace.

Presenting the motion, Raji said that non-completion of installment of the ILS led to the diversion of several Nigeria-bound flights to neighbouring countries.

“Over the years there has been several clamour from stakeholders in the aviation sector and other well-meaning Nigerians on the need for the Federal Government to adequately equip and upgrade the Nation’s airports.

“With modern landing equipment from the current Category 1 and 2 in use in Nigeria to Category 3 ILS.

“These agitations were predicated upon high number of delayed and canceled flights during the harmattan season and inclement weather conditions which makes landing and takeoff of aircraft very difficult or near impossible.

“On account of poor visibility some foreign airlines are presently diverting their international flights to Accra, Ghana and N’djamena, Chad and some other neighbouring countries with attendant negative consequences,’’ he said.

The lawmaker said that the federal government had made a N7.8 billion budgetary provision for the procurement and installation of modern landing equipment in seven airports in the country.

The airports in phase one of the installation are Lagos, Abuja, Kano, Port Harcourt, Katsina, Maiduguri and Sokoto.

He said that Category 3 ILS, known as Cat 3 ILS, had recently been installed by NAMA at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos to enable pilots land in zero visibility.

“Recent reports in the media indicated that the Cat 3 ILS instrument is not functioning at its optimal capacity because of non-availability of other supportive equipment like the runway and approach lights yet to be installed and upgraded by FAAN.

“Lack of cooperation among aviation regulatory agencies on account of petty differences has negatively impacted on the efficient management of our airports,’’ he said.

Rep. Toby Okechukwu (PDP-Enugu) said that relevant stakeholders should be held responsible for “negligence of duty’’.

“The ILS is there and we have been talking about calibration for the last three months. Nobody is doing his job.

“The committee should find those who are responsible, investigate and report back to the house in two weeks,’’ he said.

Rep. Abiodun Faleke (APC-Lagos) also said that passengers should be adequately compensated by the agencies involved.

Edited By: Abigael Joshua/Ali Baba-Inuwa


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Extreme weather hinders international flights’ safe landing at MMIA- NAMA



The Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) says recent inclement weather is hindering the safe landing of some international flights at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), Lagos.

Mr Khalid Emele, the General Manager, Public Affairs of NAMA, said on Wednesday in Lagos that flight diversion could also be accompanied by the minimas of affected airlines.

Emele said the agency’s position was that such diversions were in the interest of safety.

He said the facts on record were as follows: Lagos had two runways, which was 18 Right and 18 Left.

“The Doppler Very High Omni-Directional Radio Range (DVOR) and the Distance Measuring Equipment (DME) at the airport have successfully been calibrated and passed 100 per cent.

“The localiser is a component of the Instrument Landing System responsible for horizontal guidance at runway 18 Left has also passed 100 per cent calibration.

“While the glide slope which is another component of the Instrument Landing System that provides vertical guidance is undergoing routine maintenance,” Emele said.

He said the maintenance would be concluded and the equipment would be fully on air on Feb. 12.

Emele said that on Runway 18 Right, there was Category III ILS, which was still undergoing installation.

According to him, presently, Selex Systems, the contractors are working on the realignment of its parameters, preparatory to the calibration and commissioning of the equipment in the shortest possible time.

Emele reassured airspace users and the general public that the Nigerian airspace remained safe for seamless and economic air travel, regretting any inconveniences caused.

Edited By: Kevin Okunzuwa/Olagoke Olatoye


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