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FG lifts ban on outbound Emirates flights


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THE federal government has announced that the ban earlier placed on Emirates carrier from Nigeria has been lifted.

This was contained in a letter signed by Musa Nuhu, director-general of Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), late Friday.

Earlier on Friday, the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 had directed an immediate suspension of Emirates Airlines operations until the needed infrastructure and logistics were put in place.

Nuhu said in the statement that Emirates had informed the NCAA in writing that the UAE government had given the airline approval to suspend the pre-departure RDT requirement for passengers travelling on their flight to Dubai.

“Consequent upon the foregoing, the PTF directed the NCAA to lift the suspension placed on Emirates Airlines flights into Nigeria effective from February 5.  The public is hereby informed as follows: Emirates Airlines no longer requires passengers to carry out pre-departure RDT,” the statement read in part.

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Nuhu also noted that the PTF and other regulatory bodies on COVID-19 had not approved any laboratory to carry out RDT for incoming or departing passengers.

The ICIR had on Friday reported that the NCAA suspended outbound Emirates flights to Dubai due to failure to comply with the stipulated regulations by the federal government.

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NCAA had said that Emirates had continued to engage in airlifting passengers from Nigeria using rapid antigen tests conducted by laboratories which were not approved by regulatory authorities on COVID-19.

The ICIR also reported the implications of the suspension placed on outbound Emirate airlines to Dubai due to the number of Nigerians visiting the UAE capital for businesses and tourism.

Lukman Abolade is an Investigative reporter with The ICIR. Reach out to him via [email protected], on twitter @AboladeLAA and FB @Correction94

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