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NCAA Plans to Open More Regional Offices

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The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) on Wednesday announced plans to open more regional offices as part of its efforts to bring regulation closer to the operators.

Captain Musa Nuhu, Director-General, NCAA, made this known during the House of Representatives Committee on Aviation oversight visit to the agency in Lagos.

Nuhu explained that the step was to reduce the cumbersome nature of regulation and come closer to the operators in the industry.

He said: “We are opening five more regional offices to ensure the job in smaller areas get done and they do not have to refer to Lagos or Abuja.

“This will brings regulation closer to the operators outside Lagos and Abuja.

“Already, Port Harcourt takes care of the South-East and South-South but we are looking at opening a regional office in Enugu for the South-East.

“We are looking at another one in either Maiduguri or Yola for the North-East, Ilorin for the middle-belt and Uyo or Calabar for the South-South.”

Nuhu explained that the training for the inspectors and other regulatory staff was key to the authority oversight function.

The director-general decried a situation where NCAA was competing for manpower, especially pilots and engineers, with airlines that paid better.

Nuhu, however, said that the training was key because those inspectors with the NCAA needed more training to be better or at par with the trends in the industry.

“This will also allow the pilots and engineers to do their job professionally; so to retain them, there is need to make the remuneration nearly at par with the airlines to keep them with us,” he said.

Nuhu said NCAA and the domestic airlines had reached a compromise to ensure debts owed it was reconciled and agreed on payment plan that would be favourable to all concerned.

The director-general reel out some of the immediate needs of NCAA, adding that the regulator understood the difficulty brought by the COVID-19 pandemic to airlines.

Nuhu said that the authority would institute a payment plan that would be favourable to both the agency and operators.

Reacting, Nnolim Nnaji, Chairman, House Committee on Aviation, said the House was on its oversight function to look at what the NCAA had done and intends to do with the funds allocated and would be allocated to it.

He commended NCAA on how it handled the industry during the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic. (NAN)

Metro

Lagos-Shagamu Expressway’s Long Bridge Undergoes Repairs March 4 — Federal Controller

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The Federal Government has announced that the Lagos-Shagamu Expressway’s Long Bridge will undergo repairs to its damaged expansion joints from Monday.

The Federal Controller of Works in Lagos State, Mrs Olukorede Kesha, disclosed this in a statement on Friday night in Lagos.

Kesha, who regretted the inconvenience that these repairs might cause motorists, appealed for patience and cooperation by members of the public.

“The Federal Ministry of Works wish to inform the motoring public that repair works for the damaged expansion joints on the long bridge will commence by Monday, March 4, 2024, simultaneously on both bounds of the bridge.

“Consequently, traffic leaving and entering Lagos through the long bridge will be narrowed to two lanes on both sides of the bridge to enable the contractor handling the repair works to commence works on the other two lanes of the carriageways.

“Thus, all road users are advised to be patient and adhere to lane discipline on both approaches to the Long Bridge and around the narrowed sections on the bridge.

“The earth road beside the Shagamu bound carriageway will be made motorable, to serve as complimentary road. Other road users are advised to use alternative routes.

“Motorists are further advised to cooperate with the traffic management officials deployed to manage traffic and ensure hitch-free movements to minimise discomfort during the duration of the repair works,” she said.

According to the notification, the repair, which will begin by 7.00a.m. on Monday, will last till March 25.(NAN)

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NAFDAC Clamps Down on Illegal Sachet Water Companies in Anambra

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The National Agency for Food Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC) has shut down some unregistered sachet water production factories in Anambra state.

The companies were said to be producing water in unhealthy environments and operating without subjecting their processes to regulatory standards.

Coordinator of NAFDAC in Anambra, Louis Mmadubuatta, told newsmen in Awka that the exercise was part of the routine surveillance of the agency with the aim of protecting the health of members of the public.

“We have over time visited a number of water factories that do not comply to good manufacturing standards and normally such places are shut until they comply and those we earlier closed have done so.

“Those places are sealed and we are not opening them until they respond to the regulatory action taken against them,” he said.

Mmadubuatta, who did not reveal the locations of the sealed companies for strategic reasons, warned companies engaging in illegal manufacturing of table water and other regulated products to desist from such activities.

He said the companies should go to NAFDAC and register their products and those whose licenses had expired should endeavour to renew them.

“We are still embarking on massive sanction activities against erring companies,” he said.

The Coordinator urged members of the public to assist NAFDAC with information on illegal table water production activities going on in their neighbourhood for swift reaction while assuring them of anonymity.

He further advised that consumers should look out for product name, production and expiry dates, NAFDAC number and batch number and if they had doubts they should reach the agency.

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Court Sentences Lady to Death by Hanging for Killing Enugu Make-up Artiste

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From Sylvia Udegbunam, Enugu

An Enugu State High Court, sitting in Enugu, has sentenced Chiamaka Ifezue to death by hanging for killing an Enugu-based make-up artist, Ijeoma Nweke.

The court, presided over by Justice Kenneth Okpe, in a two-hour judgement on Wednesday, found the accused guilty of killing the victim by forcing her to drink a poisonous substance.

The corpse of the make-up artist was found in Maryland within Enugu Metropolis on Monday.

The deceased, Nweke had left home on Wednesday November 11, 2020, for a job but went missing afterwards.

Her supposed client, having refused to disclose the location for the job, asked the deceased to stop at the Enugu State Broadcasting Service (ESBS) Bus Stop, where she would then be taken to the venue.

Nweke, having perceived foul play, sent the client’s phone number to her brother via text.

Her phones were unreachable after hours leading to suspicion that she might have been kidnapped.

This led to a frantic search for her by friends and relatives until early on Monday morning when her corpse was found at Maryland in Enugu.

Eyewitnesses said that her corpse was mutilated with a substance suspected to be acid.

While delivering the judgement, Justice Okpe, said every evidence pointed to the fact that the convict lured the deceased to her house where she poisoned the deceased and evacuated her body out of her house.

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