The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) has moved to curb acts of extortion at the country’s airports as it has promised to apply stiffer sanctions against violators.
This follows several accusations by stakeholders about extortion by some officials of some agencies in some of the airports. The disclosure was made by the Managing Director of FAAN, Capt. Rabiu Yadudu, while addressing journalists on Monday in Abuja after the authority`s management meeting.
According to NAN, Yadudu said that such development will improve the integrity of the nation`s airports and Nigeria’s reliability among the comity of nations.
What the Managing Director of FAAN is saying
Yadudu said, “We plan to have a meeting with the airports regional managers and the Head of Departments (HODs). After the meeting with the HODs, they will meet with their stakeholders then the agencies.
“Primarily, to inform them that henceforth any violator will lose his or her ODC (on duty card) which means you lose your access card to the terminal.
“And we agreed that once you lose your ODC at the airport, you will not get it back. If it is a company, we will advise them to get a new staff. If it is an agency, we will advise them to get another personnel.’’
The FAAN boss pointed out that any staff that misplaces his On Duty Card (ODC) would permanently lose his right and privilege to come to the airport terminal.
Adding that the management further agreed that all personnel working in the airport, either private or government, should boldly write his or her name on the chest of the uniform for ease of visibility.
While Yadudu revealed that those whose names were not boldly written henceforth would lose their jobs, he noted that the stakeholders would soon be properly informed about the new development regarding violator`s penalties.
He urged all airport users to send messages of any wrong actions to a new WhatsApp number that would be available shortly.
He said, “If you see the name of the person (violator), put his name and the act of violation. We will get back to you through your number.
“The sanction will be permanent. This is just the beginning of our strategy. If anyone loses his or her job I, think he or she will not try evil again.
“You can see we have the all relevant officers here, all the regional managers, security chiefs are here, and leaders of operation are here. So, the implementation is immediate.’’
Yadudu said the management would keep improving the rules and regulations at the airports to further strengthen the safety and security of the air transport system.
The recent initiative by FAAN seems to be a step in the right direction as it will help eliminate the frustration that some passengers and others pass through at airports and help in the Federal Government’s move to improve on the ease of doing business.
The Federal Government should come up with a comprehensive policy to address such concerns as well as hold officials of various agencies working at these airports accountable for their conduct in order to strengthen the system.