The Minister of State for Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, has directed an immediate investigation into the use of a ladder – an unauthorised equipment at the airport – by Aero Contractors Airlines to disembark passengers at the Bauchi airport on Saturday.
A statement issued yesterday by a media aide of the minister, Mr. James Odaudu, said several reports received by the minister indicated the airline used a ladder to disembark passengers from its Boeing 737 aircraft at the Bauchi airport.
According to the minister, the act was inconsistent with Nigerian civil aviation regulations and International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) standards and recommended practices.
“The investigation will determine the immediate and remote causes of the incident with a view to developing and implementing measures that will prevent a recurrence of the unsafe and unacceptable procedure that exposed passengers to high risk of serious injury,” he added.
Sirika stated that if the airline is found culpable, the full weight of sanctions within the extant laws and regulations would be applied on it.
He however assured the travelling public that the Ministry of Transport in collaboration with Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) would ensure strict adherence to the Nigerian civil aviation regulations as well as ICAO standards and recommended practices by all operators.
Sirika further stated that the ministry would not shy away from its responsibility to ensure safe and secure air transport services which he described as sacrosanct.
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