The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has issued authority to Anambra state government to open Anambra International Cargo And Passenger Airport for commercial operations with effect from 2nd December, 2021.
The airport had been scheduled for opening late October, 2021 but the approval was declined, under circumstances, the State Government had alleged as politically-motivated.
However, in a letter by the NCAA Director-General, Captain Musa Nuhu, dated 1st December, 2021, addressed to Governor Willie Obiano of Anambra state and made available to newsmen on Thursday, the aviation authority said it has received security clearance from relevant security agencies for the opening.
It explained that the negative security clearance was the reason the authority had declined approval for the opening of the airport on the 30th of October 2021, when the state government had scheduled the commissioning.
The letter read; “His Excellency may wish to recall NCAA’s response to your request for the commissioning of the Anambra International Cargo Airport for flight operations.
“This was conveyed via a letter with reference number NCAA/ AC/ 015/ 21/ VOL/ 162 dated 28th October.
“The authority was unable to grant His Excellency’s request due to adverse security reports.
“However, I now wish to inform you that NCAA has received clearance from relevant security agencies approving the opening of the Anambra International Cargo Airport for flight operations.”
The NCAA revealed that in the interim, Category B aircrafts are permitted to land and take off from the airport from sunrise to sunset.
“In line with the provisions of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Regulations, (Nig. CARs) Part 188.8.131.52 (C), I am pleased to inform His Excellency that the Authority hereby grants Anambra State government approval to operate Category B Aircraft (Dash8-Q400 or its equivalent on rescue and fire category 5), with effect from 2nd December, 2021.
“The operations shall be Visual Flight Rules (VFR) only i.e sunrise to sunset.
“Whenever outstanding requirements are met, all restrictions will be removed,” the letter said.
The Authority urged the state government to always adhere strictly to safety, security and COVID-19 requirements at the airport at all times.
Speaking on the development, Anambra state Commissioner for Works, Engineer Marcel Ifejiofor praised the efforts of Governor Obiano who never relented, to ensure that the Anambra airport becomes operational ahead of the Christmas 2021 mass return of Ndi Anambra living in the diaspora, and other visitors.
With this NCAA clearance, airlines already approved by the relevant authorities to operate at the Anambra airport such as Airpeace, Ibom Air, United Nigeria and others are expected to start scheduling flights into and out of the airport immediately.