The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), embarrassed by presence of cows on the runway, has suspended the head of aviation security in Akure.
An Air Peace flight from Lagos was at about 12:15pm on Saturday prevented from landing at the Akure airport, after cows took over the runway.
Eyewitnesses said it took the efforts of airport security and other aviation staff to clear the runway.
The General Manager, Corporate Affairs, FAAN, Mrs. Henrietta Yakubu, said that the agency was not unaware of recent developments at some airports within the country with respect to security breaches, and had started putting measures in place to improve security.
Yakubu stated, “We have taken various initiatives and measures to guard against breaches of any sort at all our airports nationwide. It will be recalled that there had been serious allegations of security breaches at some airports recently, the latest being the incursion of the Akure airport runway, which led to a temporary disruption of landing procedures of an inbound Air Peace flight.
“While we apologise for the incident, we want to state that officers of the security department quickly dispersed the cows from the runway to allow for a successful landing of the flight. We have taken other steps like the query issued to the Akure airport manager, while the head of security at the airport has been suspended even as a team of engineers from FAAN are already working to ensure that all gaps responsible for this incident are promptly closed.”
She said the agency had also deployed 10 additional patrol vehicles to secure the airside of the Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos, following recent cases of stealing from aircraft.
“We also have a joint patrol arrangement involving military officers, men of the Nigeria Police Force and aviation security at our airports at all times. These efforts will help in no small measure at bringing to the barest minimum security infractions at our airports,” she added.
Yakubu also called for the support of stakeholders in the industry as well as passengers in improving security at the airports.