Terrorism: UN Begins Lagos, Airports Security Audit

Terrorism: UN Begins Lagos, Airports Security Audit

A team of experts from the International Civil Aviation Organisation, the United Nations agency that regulates the global aviation industry, has arrived Nigeria to carry out security audits of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, and the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja.

The audit will cover critical aviation security areas such as Inflight Security, Passenger and Baggage Security, Acts of Unlawful Interference, Facilitation, Legislation, Training, Quality Control Function, Operations, and Cargo, Mail and Catering.

It is tagged the 2024 ICAO Universal Security Audit Programme through Continuous Monitoring Approach for Lagos and Abuja airports.

The development was disclosed in a statement signed by Director of Public Affairs & Consumer Protection, Michael Achimugu, on Monday.

The USAP CMA audit, a nearly two weeks exercise, is expected end on March 22, 2024.

 According to the statement, members of the four-man team are Callum Vine (team lead), James Mabala, Tebogo Mphela and Alagie Jeng.

The Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development, Mr. Festus Keyamo, was quoted as expressing the importance of the audit in upholding the highest standards of security in Nigeria’s aviation industry.

According to Keyamo, the audit represents a concerted effort to uphold the highest standards of security across all facets of Nigeria’s aviation industry.

Through rigorous assessments, comprehensive evaluations, and collaborative partnerships, Nigeria aims to fortify her defenses against evolving threats and vulnerabilities.

The Acting Director General of Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, Chris Najomo, welcomed the ICAO auditors and highlighted the objectives of the USAP CMA.

According to him, the audit is to improve global aviation security through auditing and the continuous monitoring of AVSEC performance of member states by assessing the level of effective implementation of critical elements of the states’ AVSEC oversight system which provides an indication of the sustainability of the state’s AVSEC system.

Najomo listed other objectives to include evaluating how well a country complies with ICAO’s Annex 9 and 17 related to Facilitation and AVSEC standards, which are part of the Convention on International Civil Aviation.

“As part of the on-site auditing process, both Murtala Muhammed International Airport Lagos and Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja have been selected as airports where verification of the implementation of security measures will be carried out,” the statement partly read.

He expressed confidence in Nigeria’s improved security measures since the last audit and assured the ICAO audits of maximum cooperation for a seamless exercise.

He, however, expressed optimism that Nigeria would surpass last rating with the progressive transformations that have taken place in the industry since the last exercise and considering the level of commitment of the current administration to ensure secure, safe and efficient air transportation in Nigeria.

Najomo promised to provide support and maximum cooperation towards ensuring a hitch-free exercise.

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