OrderPaperToday – As domestic flights are to commence, the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika has said politicians and VIPs will be provided security to avoid overcrowding at the airport.

He stated this when he appeared before the Senate committee on Aviation on Thursday.

Flights have been suspended for about 100 days of due to the COVID-19 pandemic and will start next week.

According to the Minister, aides of VIPs and politicians will not be allowed to enter airports.

He said: “We have circulated this information and Mr. President has approved it. All those who have no business traveling will certainly have no business to enter the airport.

“They will not enter the airport, not at all, so any body coming into the airport, this time around as a personality, a minister or even our honourable members,distinguished senators will not be carrying their aides into the airports any longer.

“We will provide for all their security for the VIPs and the VIP gets in and travel. So the VIPs should help us and take responsibility, and ensure that they don’t add to our problems in this country.”

Sirika further informed that Abuja and Lagos airports will resume domestic operations on July 8 while, Kano, Port Harcourt, Owerri and Maiduguri would resume on 11th while other airports would resume on 15th.

He assured that airports authorities were committed to ensuring necessary safety protocols in view of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“There is nothing like rush hour, people have to stay safe before anything happens. So I’m sure that as civil aviation, we are responsible to ensure that everybody remains safe.

“So there should be no fear, no panic, the industry is highly regulated, it is one aviation and I’m sure that you have seen from what we have been doing lately.

“We have been following the international convention and practices. So this will not be different,there is nothing to panic about, we will ensure physical distancing when required”, he added.

On possible hike in fare, Sirika said: “Price is not in my hand but like I said from what we put in place, I do not think that anything significant will happen to affect the propensity to fly”.

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