The Federal Government has concluded plan to arm aviation security personnel of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) worried by various incidents of security breaches across airports in the country, the
Minister of State for Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika said the plan was to scale up security surveillance at the airports to ward off any form of threat.
Solacebase reports that the approval was earlier given after a Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting of January 4, 2017 to be fashioned after the United State Transport Security Administration (TSA) where the personnel are armed with K-9 dogs, handcuffs, batons and light weapons.
Speaking on Monday at the 2018 AVSEC retreat holding in Katsina, Sirika explained that licensing the personnel to carry arms at airports would complement other agencies in responding to security threat at the airports.
According to a statement by FAAN spokesperson, Mrs. Henrietta Yakubu, the Minister who was represented by the Rector Nigerian College of Aviation Technology (NCAT), Zaria, Capt. Mohammed Abdulsalami said discussion was at its final stage for approval.
Sirika said the development will further strengthen the integrity of the airports in view of the growing threats to the aviation industry.
“The Federal government approved for AVSEC to bear arms which is a notable achievement in this administration’s effort at improving the general safety of its citizenry and passengers passing through our airports”, he reportedly said.
He said rebranding of AVSEC was important in building brand identity and creating a recognisable corporate identity for officers with the aim of making them much more professional and customer friendly to meet up with the initiative of the Ease of Doing Business.
Sirika reiterated that most countries have shown keen interest in the country’s growing and expanding aviation industry, stressing that aviation security was a pivotal tool to sustaining safety in all the airports.
Managing Director of FAAN, Engr. Saleh Dunoma said the agency was investing in aviation security to create enabling environment that will encourage efficiency in tackling emerging security threats to civil aviation.
Dunoma disclosed that FAAN recently procured 10 additional patrol vehicles to boost the current fleet of vehicles for effective coverage and patrol while additional screening machines were being procured with old ones being replaced.