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Ebola: ASky Airline's operations into Nigeria suspended by NCAA
A statement by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has announced the suspension of all ASky Airline operations to Nigeria.
Mr. Fan Ndubuoke, NCAA’s General Manager, Public Affairs, in the statement, said the suspension was with immediate effect.
The suspension was in connection with the deadly Ebola virus that has ravaged most parts of East and West Africa.
Mr. Benedict Adeyileka, Acting Director-General, further explained that the regulatory authority had to take the urgent steps to protect Nigerians from the deadly Ebola virus.
ASky Airline operates 80 flights from West, East and Central Africa into Lagos and Abuja weekly.
It was gathered that the step was in connection with the fact that the Airline flew the Liberian who was diagnosed to have been infected with the virus, into Lagos. The man eventually died.
The statement state that: “The passenger has since died and the Country Manager of ASky was invited to the Aviation House to offer explanation to the Authority on the incident and show evidence of actions taken by the airline since the pandemic in their core areas of operation and after.
“The Airline representative could not offer any conclusive or substantial evidence neither did he demonstrate any capacity to be able to prevent a re-occurrence or possibly ship loading Ebola victims to Nigeria.
“This is contrary to the provision of Article 14 of the Chicago Convention,1944, which states that each contracting state agrees to take effective measures to prevent the spread by means of air navigation, of cholera, typhus (epidemic),smallpox, yellow fever, plague and such other communicable diseases as the contracting state shall from time to time decide to designate.
“The Acting Director General and the top management of NCAA therefore decided that the lives of millions of Nigerians were too precious to be risked on a platter of negligence of an airline.
“The Airline operations was therefore suspended with immediate effect until it is able to sufficiently and evidently prove that adequate machinery is in place to provide adequate screening of passengers in all their points of operation including profiling of each passenger."
The statement also indicated that NCAA would write to other airlines operating into and out of Nigeria to ensure they put in place all necessary preventive measures during screening of passengers which will include indicating countries earlier visited by the passengers.
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