The Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority has stated that the stealing of the approach lighting at Runway 18 Right of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos would have minimal impact on its audit by the International Civil Aviation Authority Organisation.

The Director-General of NCAA, Captain Musa Nuhu, speaking during an online meeting with journalists recently, said there was a notice to airmen regarding the runway before the theft, stating that it was out of use.

He said the theft may not be significant to impact the ICAO audit, because Nigeria had earlier announced the deficiencies of the runway.

The upcoming ICAO audit mirrors the aviation safety and aviation security oversight capacities of its 193 member states through its Universal Safety Oversight Audit Programme and Universal Security Audit Programme.

The audits, according to ICAO, are restricted to only the legislation, resources and other capacities, which state governments establish in order to effectively implement ICAO’s standards and recommended practices in each area.

Nuhu said, “It is a problem for us, even without the audit. It is a problem and we are discussing with the airport operator FAAN to see how measures can be put to prevent this occurrence in the future. It is not only unfortunate; I think it is embarrassing for the country for people to carry out such a heinous act.

“As regards the audit, we have what is called the aeronautical information publication. We also noted that the runway was out of use before this act Runway 18 Right International Airport has been closed for maintenance and there is a NOTAM, accordingly.”

According to him, all operators know that Runway 18 Right Lagos is closed and they put in the NOTAM; they have no approach lights.

“There are procedures for handling such issues and that is being done and NAMA is doing some; we are doing some. There is a notification from the AIP Aeronautical Information Publication and the NOTAMs as long as you do that you are notifying the world of deficiencies within your system and that is it. That takes care of that.

“If you have deficiencies and you do not notify, that is where you have a problem,” he explained.

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