FG to construct shooting ranges at airports to train aviation security personnel

The Federal Government has said construction of shooting ranges at major airports in Nigeria was nearing completion as part of measures to train aviation security personnel in the industry.

Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika dropped the hint while declaring open the maiden edition of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Airports Council International (ACI) Africa, Security Week in Abuja on Monday.

Sirika said the Federal Executive Council (FEC) recently approved the deployment of (K-9) security at the country’s airports following the ministry of aviation’s presentation.

The minister, who was represented by the Director-General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Captain Musa Nuhu said the development was expected to upscale the safeguarding of national and international civil aviation against acts of unlawful interference in limits yet to be recorded in Nigeria’s history.

According to Sirika: “we are working with FAAN and other stakeholders to quickly actualize the approval of the FEC for Aviation Security personnel to bear arms… we are currently addressing the challenges related to damaged, incomplete and non-existent perimeter fences at Nigeria because as the first layer of defence, airport perimeters will minimise attacks, prevent incursion and enhance general security.”

Speaking, the Managing Director of FAAN, Captain Rabiu Hamisu Yadudu said following the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO’s) re-launch of the Year of Security Culture (YOSC) 2021, FAAN in collaboration with key stakeholders in November 2020 designed an approved AVSEC roadmap.

The roadmap, in line with the Nigerian Airports Security Week theme: ‘Promoting Security Culture in Nigerian Airports’ covers awareness workshops/seminars/symposiums, Policy and process articulation, enhancing security reporting system and community relations.

The rest are security communication, standardized/structured security awareness programme, signage, posters and announcements, an increase in the number of AVSEC instructors and functional training schedule/programme and background checks.

The FAAN helmsman said “to move these policy issues into measurable actions, we have focused on capacity development for our security personnel whose professionalism has become a source of pride to the entire country.

Aviation is technology-driven. State of the art screening and surveillance systems are currently replacing old and epileptic systems in order to improve efficiency and assure satisfactory customer experience while enhancing the security of flights, crew and passengers.

“The Authority has strengthened its collaboration with host communities more than ever before and will continue to constructively engage them as critical partners in our journey towards building a robust security culture in and around our airports. Our security communication is receiving the needed attention for operational efficiency and the next generation of AVSEC instructors are being identified, developed and certified.”

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