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Mast colony

Service crisis looms as NCAA begins demolition of 8,805 telecoms, banks masts

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Following the expiration of given 30-day ultimatum to owners of telecoms and banks network reception masts by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), the aviation safety agency said it is beginning to demolish masts belonging to firms that are yet to regularize their approvals.
If the agency puts paid to its threat, some of the banks whose services will be impaired include United Bank of Africa (UBA) with 439 masts; Guaranty Trust Bank Plc with 295 masts; Unity Bank with 217 masts; and Sterling Bank with 159 masts.
Others are Union Bank with 92 masts; First City Monument Bank, 205 masts; Fidelity Bank, 83 masts; and Access Bank with 303 masts.
Also, services of a leading telecom (name with held) may be seriously disturbed as the telecoms giant has about 7,012 masts across the federation.
NCAA’s General Manager, Public Relations, Mr. Sam Adurogboye noted that “A total of 8,805 masts belonging to the aforementioned organisations will be decommissioned forthwith. The NCAA wishes to reiterate that it will continue to apply requisite sanctions for violation of extant regulations. Especially, where the resolve of the Authority is tested.”
In an interview, he argued that the NCAA requires an Aviation Height Clearance approval for every tower installation in the country irrespective of the height and location, stressing that “This is derived from the Nigeria Civil Aviation Regulations (NigCARS) Part which stipulates that no person or organisation shall put up a structure (permanent or temporary) within the navigable airspace of Nigeria unless such a person or organisation is a holder of Aviation Height Clearance Certificate granted under this regulation.
“It should, therefore, be noted that under the Civil Aviation Act. 2006, section 30(3) (1), the NCAA is empowered to prohibit and regulate the installation of any structure which by virtue of its height or position is considered to endanger the safety of air navigation.”
He was quick to note that some of the providers and operators had since commenced regularisation of their masts while others have remained adamant in the last 30 days of the ultimatum.
It would be recalled that the Association of Licensed telecoms Operators of Nigeria (ALTON) had shortly after the ultimatum, reacted and called on the Federal Government to address the growing multiple taxation frustrating the industry including the regularization of telecoms masts to avoid service disruptions nationwide.

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