Flights will resume at Nigerian airports on 8 July, the federal government has announced. The Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, made this known via his official Twitter handle on Monday.
The minister explained that the resumption of commercial operations would begin with the Lagos and Abuja airports on 8 July. Kano, Port Harcourt, Owerri and Maiduguri would resume from July 11, he added.
Minister Sirika wrote, “I am glad to announce that Abuja & Lagos airports will resume domestic operations on the 8th of July, 2020. Kano, Port Harcourt, Owerri & Maiduguri to resume on the 11th. Other airports on the 15th. Date for international to be announced in due course. Bear with us.”
The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) on Saturday, 27 June held dry run simulation exercises at the domestic terminals of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, and Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos, respectively in preparation for the post-Covid resumption of commercial flights.
After the exercise, Sirika announced that domestic passengers will now have to get to the airports like three hours before departure, while international passengers would be expected to get to the airports about five hours before their flight. This is to ensure that all Covid-19 protocols, including safety markings, social distancing, hand sanitising and baggage decontamination, are complied with.
Nigeria shut down its airports for commercial flight operations on 23 March as part of the measures to curb the spread of Covid-19.