In the light of the growing threat posed by the coronavirus pandemic; the Federal Government on Saturday confirmed that it would shut down all inbound and outbound flight operations; in the Lagos and Abuja International Airports with effect from Monday.
The Director-General of Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Capt. Musa Nuhu; confirmed the development in a letter addressed to all airlines’ Country Managers. The letter was dated March 21 with Ref: NCAA/DG/AlR/ll/16/106. Nuhu explained in the statement that henceforth; all airports in Nigeria were closed to all incoming international flights with the exception of emergency and essential flights.
Specifically, the letter had as its subject “Update on clarification on flight restriction into Nigeria due to COVID-19 pandemic”.
“Further to our earlier letter on restriction of international flights into Nigeria; we wish to inform you that effective March 23 at 23:00 to April 23 at 23:00. The Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos and Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport Abuja (DNAA) will be closed to all International flights.
“Emergency and essential flight operations are however exempted from this restriction.
“This is in addition to the closure of Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, Kano; Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu; and Port-Harcourt International Airport, Omagwa; effective on March 21 at 23:00.”
However, Nuhu said domestic flights would continue normal operations at all the airports in the country. Further, he said all airlines were required to submit passenger manifest to Port Health Authorities; prior to arrival of flights into Nigeria, adding that they should be guided accordingly.
Equally important, Nigeria is currently battling to rein in the coronavirus pandemic; with the country having now recorded a total of 22 cases, three of them in Abuja. Also, the government has shut down schools across the nation.