The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority has said there is no need to stop local flights despite a ban on gatherings of over 50 people by the government.
Bauchi State Governor, Bala Mohammed, who tested positive for Covid19, is believed to have contracted the disease from Mohammed Atiku Abubakar on an Aero Contractors flight from Lagos to Abuja last week.
The spokesperson for the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, Sam Adurogboye, said over 50 persons could be allowed in an aircraft because all the passengers must have gone through the mandatory screening process.
He said, “All passengers in an aircraft have been screened. At least their status has been ascertained by virtue of the screening they went through before boarding the aircraft.
“So to an extent passengers in an aircraft are protected because they’ve had their hands sanitised and their temperatures checked before they got onto the plane.”
When asked if those who tested positive for coronavirus in Abuja after they had joined flights from Lagos were not screened properly at the Ikeja airport, Adurogboye argued that most of the infected persons were travelers who had visited foreign nations.
He said, “You can see that the majority of the cases are coming from those who traveled to locations outside this country. So there is a need for people to comply and abide by instructions.
“The instruction is that once you arrive in Nigeria from abroad, the first thing to do is to self-isolate yourself. People seem to be neglecting this, but, of course, it is not time to blame. Rather it is time to provide solutions and for people to do the right thing.”
Also speaking to The PUNCH, the Managing Director of Aero Contractors, Ado Sanusi, said the airline had taken appropriate steps to ensure that COVID-19 was not spread.
He said, “We in aviation check temperature of passengers and do social distancing as much as we can. When someone comes to our counter, he is advised not to shake anyone and maintained some distances
“Temperature is usually checked at MM2 and passengers are given hand sanitisers and our crew has been trained on social distancing.”