Following the temporary closure of the Nnamdi Azikwe International Airport, Abuja, the Federal Government of Nigeria has revoked the ban on helicopters shuttle services from Kaduna to Abuja.
Earlier this week, the National Security Adviser, Babagana Munguno, had announced the ban on such services.
However, while speaking to State House correspondents on Wednesday, the Minister of State, Aviation, Hadi Sirika, said that the government had rescinded its decision on the matter.
He said with the latest development, helicopters can continue to be flying into and out of the Abuja airport, but warned that the city centre remained a no-fly zone.
The minister said, “On the helicopter issue, the National Security Adviser has the constitutional responsibility vested on him by the President to advise him on national security matters.
“In his wisdom, he had earlier sent out letters banning helicopters operation into the (Abuja) airport but the National Security Adviser has earlier this morning (Wednesday) said helicopters will continue to fly into Abuja airport from wherever.
“Then, the procedure that they will use to approach the airport under landing spot will be advised accordingly before the end of today (Wednesday).
“This means that helicopters can come into Abuja and out bearing in mind that within the metropolitan city of Abuja, there are no fly zones and this is very normal in every country.
“They have areas where there are no fly zones but the National Security Adviser this morning approved that helicopters should enter Abuja airport and out but the procedures in which helicopters should enter into Abuja and the spot which the helicopters will land will be advised in due course and it shall be before the end of today (Wednesday).”
Sirika added that the operation at the Kaduna International Airport had been going on smoothly since the closure of the Abuja airport.