The aviation community is in a celebratory mood following confirmation that Nigeria had retained her Category-one status.
This has once again confirmed in unambiguous terms that the reforms in the aviation sector is not only receiving international recognition, but global acclamation.
Four years ago, the country was first awarded the much coveted status after an audit of the worthiness of her airspace by the United States Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
Recently when the FAA degraded Indian from category-one, doomsday critics of the aviation Masterplan rolled out their drums to predicted a similar fate for Nigeria.
However, industry experts were unperturbed, given the unprecedented dramatic transformation witnessed in the Nigerian Aviation industry.
Indeed, within the space of three years after this certification, the various parastatals under the Ministry of Aviation have attained significant milestones
The much celebrated remodelling of 22 airports across the country along with provision of safety and security infrastructure has stimulated economic activity with its attendant benefits of wealth and job creation.
For instance, the remodelled Murtala Mohammed Airport, Domestic Terminal one Lagos, popularly known as GAT has processed a total of 1007,823 passengers between January and August 2014.
Similarly a total number of 12,564 aircraft movements were recorded during the same period.
The construction of six state-of-the-art, international airport terminals in Lagos, Kano, Kaduna, Enugu, Bayelsa and Port Harcourt has already commenced after President Goodluck Jonathan led administration signed a bilateral agreement worth $4 billion for their constructions with the Chinese government last year July.
Nigerian airports are now fully compliant with ICAO standards for firefighting and rescue operations.
The firemen are well kitted to efficiently carry out their duties in securing and safeguarding the airport terminals and the lives of passengers and workers.
To beef up its counter-terrorism capacity, Government procured and deployed hi-tech, 3-in-1 (liquids, metals and explosive detection) screening equipment at all her airports.
These equipment have been fully installed and are functional at Lagos and Abuja while those for other airports are at different stages of completion.
A key component of the Infrastructure improvement programme for the various airports is the procurement and installation of more passenger handling equipment and support systems which include luggage screening and handling, conveyor systems, air conditioning, standby power systems, baggage belt systems, lifts, escalators and travelators.
The new Air Traffic Management system under the TRACON project has made significant progress in putting in place radar and other navigational guidance systems that addressed the gaps in the country’s air navigational coverage.
The country now has functional, sophisticated navigational aids and well equipped control towers to its credit.
Last year, Nigerian Aviation sector was able to record a major milestone in search and rescue operations. In these situations, realtime radar playback provided by TRACON proved invaluable.
The redesigning of the airspace to be WGS-84 compliant is one of the steps taken by the country to meet ICAO’s standard and transit to performance Based Navigation (PBN)
Government has deployed a sophisticated flight tracking system, and an Automated Flight Information Reporting System (AFIRS) which was previously unavailable in the country.
Another pertinent milestone is the IOSA certification.
Safety in the airspace has improved with accurate weather prediction because of new Meteorological equipment.
International airlines now relay on our weather reports.
The country’s Accident Investigation and Prevention Bureau, AIPB became the first in Africa to have its hangar and is now able to quickly download, extract, decode and analyse the aircraft accident data from the CVR and FDR (Black Boxes) thus saving time and money.
This capacity has sped up the investigation process and upgraded our aircraft accident investigation process.
Even the once neglected aviation training school at Zaria, Nigerian College of Aviation Technology, NCAT was not left out of the transformation agenda of this administration.
It has been upgraded and well-equipped in order to fulfill its mandate of producing world class skilled manpower for the country’s aviation industry.
Aside from the structural and management changes at the school, government has also purchased aircrafts, helicopters, Simulator, Auto pilot Training station and other training equipment for the institution.
These milestones have seen Nigerian Aviation leap forward in rapid bursts.
The economic benefits of retaining the aviation industry’s Category one status is numerous, including the positioning of Lagos as a hub airport in the region.
Furthermore, it will attract investors to tap into the corresponding and emerging business opportunities that will provide a value chain for the industry.
The sector will leverage on the retention of the CAT One status, to prepare for the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) safety audit of the industry which is coming up soon.
With the introduction of Key Performance Indicators (KPI) as a critical management tool, Osita Chidoka, The Aviation Minister has provided templates that challenges managers to set goals and continually improve performance.
The KPIs are the vital navigation instruments that will propel the aviation sector to take its rightful place as the centre piece of aviation in Africa.
Yakubu Dati writes from Lagos
NCC, Digital Encode Support NITRA Innovative Tech Forum On Post-COVID-19 Strategies
The Nigerian Communications Commission (NCC), Nigeria’s telecommunications regulator and Digital Encode, Cybersecurity and Compliance advisory company, have indicated interest to partner with the Nigeria Information Technology Reporters Association (NITRA), the national umbrella body of ICT reporters, as it organizes a forum that will x-ray the industry’s future plans for ICT growth post pandemic era.
The event, slated to hold on October 15, 2020, will seek to discuss the needs for a fortified ICT sector after the COVID-19 era, and the level of preparedness of ICT stakeholders to embrace the challenge of being pivotal to the stability and growth of all other sectors.
A statement from NITRA National Secretariat in Lagos indicates that due to the pandemic and need to observe the COVID-19 protocol on social distancing, the event will be held via a Webinar.
This year’s theme, “Multi-stakeholder Approach To National Recovery Post-Pandemic”, is in line with the annual event’s generic theme, ‘NITRA Innovative Tech Forum’, a contribution by NITRA to the development of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) innovations and policies in Nigeria.
Prof. Umar Danbatta, executive vice chairman, NCC is expected to deliver the keynote speech at the event and will throw more light on Federal Government’s plans, programmes and policies on post-pandemic strategies using ICT.
Dr. Adewale Obadare and Dr. Seyi Akindeinde, founders of Digital Encode, while accepting to support the event expressed their readiness to offer their expertise in Cybersecurity for organisations to prepare against cyber- attacks with the new normal.
They will also highlight areas that are high risks that need fortification in terms of cybersecurity.
Speaking on the event, Mr. Chike Onwuegbuchi, national chairman, NITRA, noted that as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to leave its negative trails across the globe, economic reboot for countries will not only depend on how well they readapt to the new normal, but also more on their recovery plans.
According to him: “While the federal government has consistently expressed its willingness to set all policies in place to engender growth, and accelerated implementation of these policies, private sector firms have also shown great hunger for the task ahead in post-COVID-19 era.
However, the question that needs to be answered is whether all stakeholders are ready for the required task ahead.”
The event will also offer participating companies opportunities to publicize some of their individual efforts at contributing to reacting a soft landing or lifeline for SMEs and other ancillary companies as the pandemic threatens their survival.
Digital Encode is a multi-award winning and leading consulting and integration firm that specializes in the design, management, and security of business-critical networks, telecommunications environments and other Information Technology (IT) infrastructures.
NCC Threatens Illegal Users of GSM Boosters with Arrest, Prosecution
Nigerian Communication Commission (NCC) has warned telecom consumers to desist from using illegal GSM boosters.
The commission also said that anyone caught using a GSM booster without obtaining approval of a duly licensed network operator will face arrest and prosecution.
GSM boosters are devices that transmit and receive telecommunications signals and can therefore interfere with other radio frequency equipment.
Ikechukwu Adinde, director, public affairs, NCC, said in a notice published on NCC website, that only licensed network operators are allowed to use GSM boosters.
The booster, also known as amplifier or repeater is made up of three main elements – exterior antenna, amplifier, and interior antenna.
They form a wireless system to boost cellular reception
“Members of the public should note that, willful interference with any wireless telegraphy is an offence under Section 16 of the Telegraphy Act, 2004,”it said
The agency said it will not condone any flagrant breach of this law.
It has also enforced measures to prosecute offenders.
Accordingly, monitoring mechanisms have been put in place and anyone caught using a GSM booster without obtaining approval of a duly licensed network operator will face arrest and prosecution.
“Any member of the public with useful information regarding the illegal use of GSM Boosters should contact the Commission on 09-4617000/7351 or send an email to [email protected],” the notice said.
“Individuals desirous of using GSM Boosters should note that they can only do so in conjunction with licensed network operators,” it added.
Tizeti Selects Nokia to Provide LTE Fixed Wireless Access Solution for High-Speed internet Services in Nigeria
Tizeti announced that it selected Nokia’s Fastmile Long Term Evolution (LTE) technology to enable usprovide superior internet services to over 1 Million subscribers in Port Harcourt, Edo and Ogun in Nigeria.
Tizeti will deploy Nokia’s AirScale Base Station TDD-LTE and FastmileFixed Wireless Access (FWA) gatewaysto deliver premium internet and Virtual Private Network (VPN) services to Residential, Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs).
The solution will also enable Tizeti’sto deliver a more robust, high-speedinternet service to subscribers and the flexibility to seamlessly evolve to 5G Fixed Wireless Access when needed.
Nokia’s FWA solution enables Tizeti to fast-track broadband access and provide a best-in-class broadband experience to its subscribers.
Nokia’sAirScale Base Stations ensure high-quality connectivity and coverage and enablesTizeti to evolve the network in line with customer demand.
Nokia’sFastmilegateways connect wirelessly to the existing network to createa fastbroadband connection and enhanced Wi-Fi experience in the home.
The Nokia Network Services Platform will help Tizeti to simplify operations and quickly respond to changing market demands.
Kendall Ananyi, Tizeti, said:“We are committed to providing the best-in-class network experience to our subscribers. We are confident that Nokia’s proven technology and expertise will help us differentiate our services based on quality. This a crucial project for us as it introduces LTE in our networks and allows us to bring new and innovative services to our subscribers.”
Eniola Balogun, Nokia, said:“We are thrilled to work with Tizeti on the initiative to upgrade their network to bring the latest products and services to its subscribers. Nokia Fastmile will help Tizeti to cost-effectively enhance the customer experience.
The project will also enable them to delight their subscribers by providing more reliable data services.
On the other hand, Tizeti will benefit by adding new revenue streams.”
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