In a bid to further boost security at all areas of the Nnmadi Azikiwe International Airport (NAI), Abuja, the management of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) has installed additional 200 Closed Circuit Television (CCTV) cameras at the airport.
This is as FAAN has set up a post-certification committee to ensure it retains the certifications of Abuja and Lagos Airports in 2017. The two airports were certified in 2017 by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA).
The new CCTV cameras installed extend to all the strategic areas including the airside and the car parks at the airport with effective control room.
Mr. Mahmoud Sani, the Regional Manager, North Central and Airport Manager Abuja Airport disclosed this to our correspondent in an exclusive interview in Abuja over the weekend.
According to Sani, the airport had CCTV cameras already installed in tactical areas, but the drive to further increase surveillance propelled the management to acquired and install additional cameras.
He declared that the management would not toy with safety and security of humans and equipment at the airport, noting that security was also beefed up within the airport environment.
Sani explained further that all the equipment of FAAN at the airport including the screening machines were serviceable, adding that its collaboration with other security agencies at the airport had further enhanced security layout at the airport.
He said: “In a bid to boost security, the management of FAAN has awarded another contract for installation of CCTV cameras to cover those areas that were not hitherto covered. The new contractor has installed over 200 cameras to capture those areas not captured by the old contract. Also, the United Kingdom has screened us severally and issued us commendation letter, recently.
“As a result of the constant meetings with other security agencies, we have been able to checkmate rivalry in the system. When the Ease of Doing Business policy of the Federal Government came up, we had some resistances, but we were able to at the end of the day, had understanding.
“Now, everybody knows where it belongs and everyone is complying. We continue to tell our security people to be firm and polite in discharging their duties. The era of infighting among security agencies is gone. Also, we have a perfect working relationship between us and other agencies. The era of a landlord and tenant is gone. We are a chain because you can’t run an airport without the other agencies.”
Sani explained further that immediately after the Abuja Airport was certified by NCAA, FAAN’s management set up a post-certification committee to ensure the airports especially Abuja continues to retain the new status.
With the certifications of the two airports in 2017, Nigeria became the only country on the continent to have two of its airports certified.
He recalled that it took determination and concentration from both management and staff of FAAN for the certification to be achieved, stressing that the status would be jealously guided.
He said: “This was an airport commissioned in 1982 and could not be certified then even though the exercise started in 2006. So, all of us in the certification committee and the management wanted to make history and the management felt this was the right time for us to do that.”
“You can imagine we attend meetings from morning till night with the NCAA observing and correcting the open items.”
Then, eventually, the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) said we have closed all our gaps in the system and recommended us for the certification. A lot of energy, manpower and resources went into the programme.
“Even now, we still audit whatever was done; every day we are on the field to ensure that we retain the certificate. The certificate is just for three years and we are doing everything possible to ensure that we retain our certificate for the airport.
“After the certification, we set up an audit team that goes through all the requirements again with the NCAA so that they can guide us on how to close any noticed gaps. We currently have a post-certification committee that ensures things are done appropriately and we maintain the standard.