ShareAs the nation looks forward to improved aviation safety in 2012, stakeholders and professionals in the industry believe that the sector could grow higher, in 2012, with greater dedication from stakeholders and government. The National Secretary of the Nigerian Aviation Professionals Association (NAPA), Comrade Abdulrazak Saidu, urged the government to focus attention on the ongoing rehabilitation of some of the old infrastructure in all the major airports.
Part of the infrastructure challenges he believes government should deal with is the installation of the Instrument Landing System (ILS) for the domestic runway of the MMA (18L) at the Murtala Mohammed Airport, Lagos.
He said the failure of aviation authorities to ensure the installation of the airfield lighting on this runway years after its reopening was a huge setback to flight operations, explaining that as from 6pm, domestic aircraft could not land or take-off from the runway.
The former minister of aviation, Mr Babatunde Omotoba, had reopened the runway in December 2008, after over two years of closure for resurfacing.
He also lamented the huge debts owed the agencies by the airline operators, stressing that the government over the years had not been decisive on this critical issue, but had rather set up committees on indebtedness that did not deliver their mandate.
The present minister had in October given the airlines another 36 months to pay up all the debts owed the agencies, especially the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency after several postponements by the previous ministers.
Saidu also commented on the ongoing imbroglio between the Government and major concessionaires and privatisation in the sub-sector, saying that for the industry to move forward, the Government should address the issue in 2012.
Also, Chief Executive Officer, Aviation Safety Consultant, Mr Chris Amaechi wants the minister to look in the direction of the Nigerian College of Aviation Technology, Zaria for more improvement.
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Experts proffer way forward for aviation in 2012