Why The FG is Shutting Down International Airports in PH, Enugu & Kano

Amid the growing cases of Coronavirus in Nigeria, the Federal Government has ordered the shutdown of international flights from three international airports in the South-South, Southeast and Northwest regions of the country.

The Director-General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Musa Nuhu, said in a statement released on Thursday that the Port Harcourt International Airport, Rivers; Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu; and Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, Kano will be closed indefinitely from March 21, 2020.

“Effective from 00:01 hours on Saturday, March 21, 2020, Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, Kano, Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu, and Port Harcourt Airport, Rivers will be closed to all international flights,” he said.

Among a total of five international airports in Nigeria, the Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport, Abuja and the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos would remain open as part of precautionary measures to curb the spread of Coronavirus.

Persons travelling out or into the country would only do so going forward through Lagos or Abuja. Flights from the 13 (now 15) high-risk Coronavirus countries that were placed on travel restrictions by the government will not be allowed into the country.

All excursions to any airport in the country have also been suspended indefinitely.

The motive behind the closure of the three international airports is to adequately monitor individuals arriving or departing the country to minimize the incidence of Coronavirus.

Nigeria has been taking drastic measures since Tuesday, March 17, to combat the spread of Coronavirus in the country. The government intensified efforts in arresting the situation after recording 12 confirmed cases of Coronavirus, with ten occurring this week alone.

Schools, including universities, have been ordered to shut down, likewise religious gatherings exceeding 50 persons. The National Youth Service Corp, NYSC orientation camps and the Nigerian Professional Football League, NPFL have also been suspended till further notice.

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