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Coronavirus Hits 36, NCAA Shuts Down Lagos, Abuja Airports

Coronavirus Hits 36, NCAA Shuts Down Lagos, Abuja Airports

Hadi Sirika, Minister of Aviation

…Reps refuse medical screening at airports

By Ayoola Olaitan

Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA, has shut down the two remaining international airports as Coronavirus cases rises to 36 in Nigeria, with 33 active cases, 2 discharged and one dead.

The Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja (DNAA) and Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos (DNMM) has been shut down today to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus.

NCAA who gave this update through a release to airline operators as a new development on the closure of the international airports, called for full compliance to the directive in order to completely fight against the spread of the Coronavirus in the country.

According to NCAA, “further to our earlier letter on restriction of International flights into Nigeria, we wish to inform you that effective Monday 23rd March at 2300Z to 23rd April at 2300Z, Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos (DNMM) and the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja (DNAA) will be closed to all International Flights.

“Henceforth, all airports in Nigeria are closed to all incoming International flights with the exception of emergency and essential flights. Domestic flights will continue normal operations at all airports. All airlines are required to submit passenger manifest to Port Health Authorities prior to arrival of flights into Nigeria”.

Despite earlier assurances that the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja (DNAA) and Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos (DNMM) will remain open to international flights, Minister of Aviation; Sen Hadi Sirika has shut down both airports from its operations. The country has already ban flights from 15 countries, which were classified as high-risk states as far as the COVID-19 cases are concern.

One of the International air carrier Emirates airlines has also suspended its flights into Lagos and Abuja due to the epidemic virus and listed that EK785/786, EK781/782, EK783/784 has all been cancelled.

Emirates airline said” due to the COVID-19 outbreak and its impact on the aviation industry, Emirates will be suspending operations into Lagos and Abuja. EK785/786, EK781/782, EK783/784, the listed flights are cancelled from 23rd of March 2020”.

In a new development, members of the House of Representatives are refusing to subject themselves to medical screening at airports.

The Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari, revealed this in a letter to the Speaker, House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Olufemi Gbajabiamila, where he requested all members of the House of Reps who returned to Nigeria from foreign trips to report themselves to the nearest Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, test centre with immediate effect.

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