From Suleiman Idris, Lagos
An industry think tank group in the aviation sector, the Aviation Round Table has threw it weight behind the decision of the federal government to arm the aviation security personnel AVSEC across airports in the country.
ART described the action as one that is expected to enhance the national civil aviation security program (NCASP) in tandem with global practices.
Since the September 11 2001 attack in the US, global aviation security has continue to undergo constant changes and improvement across airports around the world.
The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) controlled AVSEC’s primary objective is the protection and safety of passengers, crew, ground personnel, aircraft and facilities serving civil aviation against act of unlawful interference in sterile areas of airport.
However, the participation of other security agencies are inevitable in the airport security network.
ART’s image maker Mr.Olumide Ohunayo in in an electronic statement said “ Consequent to this approval we strongly advise a review of the airport security architecture to cover elements of the various security agencies which will now form the new organogram.”
“This will eliminate inter agency rivalry, foster cooperation, provide common platform to asses measure of effectiveness, process operational effectiveness and after action plans.
Please note that they administratively remain under their parent agencies but under the operational command and control of the new Airport Security Architecture.” he told journalists.
Furthermore, ART said as a body it advise that selected men to bear arms be properly trained and tested in rudiment areas of arms handling, standard armoury and trained armourer for safe keeping of ammunitions while necessary procedure for issuance, retrieval and accountability of expended rounds if necessary be put in place.
It said “ In the 90s we delegated and rotated the heads of security agencies serving in the airports to supervise and control night operations which is akin to the United States TSA model.
Security threats have evolved we as a nation are challenged to find the nexus and best fit security architecture as our security challenges cannot be the same with other nations,
Therefore we cannot lift models hook line and sinker.”