Private jet owners now to undergo airport checks

There will no longer be free entry and exit for users of private and chartered jets at the airports, Comptroller-General of the Nigerian Immigration Service (NIS) David Paradang has said.

Such passengers, he said, would henceforth, go through immigration checks before boarding and after alighting from their jest.
He said the measure was introduced because of the prevailing security challenge in the country.

Last April 26, Rivers State Governor Rotimi Amaechi’s private, jets was stopped at the Akure Airport in Ondo State over the pilot’s alleged refusal to file a flight plan.
Some analysts, however, said the development had political undertone because it occurred in the heat of the rift between product Goodluck Jonathan and Amaechi.

Paradang said private jets owners and chartered operators who do no submit themselves to checks would face the consequences of their action.
He said compliance with immigration regulations was not negotiable at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Ikeja, Lagos, warned his men to desist from extorting passengers.

All passengers, he said, must comply with the regulation as part of the security requirements for travelling out of the airports. He said the NIS would will ease out any officer found to be involved in any corrupt practice, which tarnishes the image of the country.
He bemoaned a situation where security agencies at airports engage in extortion of passengers, saying an internal mechanism was being put in place to identify such bag eggs, who do not have any business working at the airport.

Paradang said the NIS would collaborate with other agencies, including the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria ( FAAN), to provide more facilities to ease passenger facilitation after many hours of flight, as well as deploy facilities at the airport counters to aid smooth processing of passengers through a database.
He said: ”There is need to provide more facilities so that when more aircraft arrive at the terminal about the same time, Immigration officials could do their work without much rigours. 

We all know the rule, it is wrong for anybody to go and receive any passenger at the foot of the aircraft at the private terminal. Government has already given a directive to that effect. The whole idea is to ensure that no category of passenger could escape security checks at the airport.

“We are going to stop a situation where people alight from the aircraft and get into the car. The security arrangement requires that such passengers must submit themselves to immigration checks. We are reinforcing our personnel at such private terminals to ensure total compliance with all security requirements at the airport,” he said.

The NIS boss said the Service is pursuing a system that would ensure that the processing of passengers at the airport is done through a central database, saying that the provision of 18 additional check in counters for passenger profiling, was a welcome development.

”We have developed a system where our database would capture all information about the passenger that travels through Nigerian airports,” he said, urging FAAN to expedite action on the on-going structural work at the airport to ensure passengers have a good travel experience



The Nation
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