dr. Harold Demuren, former director general of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), has called for better funding for security than the $20 per passenger currently charged as a security fee.
Speaking at the Aviation Round Table (ART) Q2/2022 Business Breakfast Meeting (BBM), focusing on ‘Perspectives in Multi-layered Aviation Security System and Passenger Facilitation at the Golfview Hotel GRA Ikeja, Lagos, where he stated that terrorists had adequate planning time , funding and a willing attitude that drives them all.
Demuren also sought more funding to improve security around the airports.
In addition to the key concerns needed for multi-layer aviation security and funding, Demuren cited the human factor and the state of Nigeria’s aviation as part of the range for a working system.
He described funding as key to supporting security oversight and required for state-of-the-art security equipment, but stressed that workers within the system posed a risk.
Speaking about how workers can compromise safety by becoming threats from within, the former NCAA DG insisted that training and ongoing training should be prioritized.
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Renowned security adviser Dr Ayodele Obilana, who also spoke at the event, in his presentation on ‘Challenges to the Passenger Facilitation Process in the Aviation Security Regime’, called for a balance between facilitation and security procedures.
His words: “Operational process for seamless airport passage calls for ‘balancing’ between facility and security procedures. One is not to dominate the other. The regime should also ensure coordination and cooperation between airport agencies and the entrusting authority legally appointed to carry out the process in all its facets. The facilitation process must also ensure that the security layers in the process itself are not compromised.
“Security layers of airport operations must be strictly enforced, especially as aviation continues to be a prime target for perpetrators of illegal acts. And things should not be taken for granted, which is why screening and other security measures should be adhered to with acceptable international standards.
In his opening address, President Aviation Safety Round Table Initiative (ASRTI), Dr. Gabriel Olowo said that given the current deterioration in security and challenges in Nigeria in agricultural lands, churches and mosques, road and rail transport, the ART was reviewing the aviation system in the hope that the authorities take notes and do what is necessary.
“We are assessing the multi-layered security system in aviation through the eyes of respected professionals and discussants who have graciously honored our invitation to be here before it ever happened. This is the voice of a town crier. It is expected that the implementation of today’s conclusions will be treated with the utmost seriousness by the responsible task owners.”