NCAA begins demolition of illegal telecommunication masts

The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has commenced demolition of telecommunication masts in different locations within Nigeria.

This demolition exercise according to a statement issued by the spokesperson of the authority, Sam Adurogboye Tuesday, will similarly affect some banks and financial institutions who have discountenanced NCAA’s regulatory requirements on the clearance to erect any high structure within the navigable airspace in Nigeria.

The regulatory authority said it was left with no choice as the 30-day ultimatum given to those telecommunication service providers has expired.

Prior to the expiration of the ultimatum, letters of reminder were written to all affected organisations to obtain Aviation Height Clearance (AHC) for their masts.

It will be recalled that the NCAA had earlier warned all Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) providers and telecom operators against violation of safety regulations. A 30-day ultimatum was therefore handed down for compliance.

“This is derived from the Nigeria Civil Aviation Regulations (NigCARS) Part 12.1.7.1.3.1 which stipulates that no person or organisation shall put up a structure (permanent or temporary) within the navigable airspace of Nigeria unless such a person or organisation is a holder of Aviation Height Clearance Certificate granted under this regulation.

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In line with this, the regulatory authority requires an Aviation Height Clearance (AHC) approval for every tower installation in the country irrespective of the height and location.

“It should, therefore, be noted that under the Civil Aviation Act. 2006, section 30(3) (1), the NCAA is empowered to prohibit and regulate the installation of any structure which by virtue of its height or position is considered to endanger the safety of air navigation.

“While some of the providers and operators have since commenced regularisation of their masts, others have failed to do the same.”

Following this, a total of 8,805 masts belonging to telecommunications companies and banks will be decommissioned forthwith.

The NCAA, however, reiterated that it will continue to apply requisite sanctions for violation of extant regulations especially, where the resolve of the Authority is tested.

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