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Fresh revelation by the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) on Sunday has countered and exposed the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) chairman, Prof Mahmood Yakubu on his claims of weather-induced flight disruptions that delayed airlift of sensitive materials.
The Federal agency in a statement signed by its General Manager, Public Affairs, Mr Khalid Emele, revealed it ensured 24-hour operation at all Nigerian airports on Feb. 15 to facilitate the transportation of INEC materials nationwide, thus exonerating NAMA from the logistics challenges claimed by INEC Chairman, as reason for the postponement of polls.
Business Hilights recalls that INEC had announced the rescheduling of the Presidential and National Assembly Elections from Feb.16 to Feb. 23 due to logistics reasons.
In a detailed explanation which further exposed Prof Yakubu’s claims, Emele said the provision of the 24-hour navigation services was based on the directive from the Minister of State for Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika.
While making it clear that there was no disruption in the provision of air traffic services on Feb. 15 and 16, Emele averred that this was in keeping with the agency’s mandate of providing uninterrupted safe, effective, efficient, and economic air navigation services in the country.
He said “NAMA wishes to reassure all airspace users and the general public that the Nigerian airspace shall remain open for all airspace users before, during and after the rescheduled general elections.
NAMA added that “The agency has put in place appropriate contingency measures to ensure safe flight operations within the period, as well as possible extension of operational hours of any domestic airport where the need arises.”
NAMA therefore advised airline operators, the travelling public and other service providers who were dependent on the agency’s services to discountenance INEC claims and carry on with their businesses as usual.
The Federal Government is yet to respond to the latest development as tension on relieving the Professor of Terrorism and Counterterrorism Management from INEC command and control deepens.
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