Covid-19: Buhari Denies Five Governors Approval To Fly Out Of Nigeria
President Mohammadu Buhari-led government has denied five governors flight approval, since the closure of the airports and the lockdown order. The decision to close the airports is in order to curb the COVID-19 outbreak.
Nigeria’s Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, recently, made this revelation.
According to Sirika, three out of the four governors are members of the All Progressives Congress (APC). Two of the governors are from the South-east, two from South-south, while one was from North-central.
Sirika disclosed this in Abuja on Tuesday, at the daily press briefing by members of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19.
“Every single flight that we approved and will be approved will be an essential flight and 98 per cent of the essential flight will be connected to COVID-19.
“A few of them, maybe 1 per cent may be either repatriation, requests from the diplomatic community, which must go through foreign affairs, or repatriation due to illness of another kind which will be medical-kind and those evacuations will also need a stamp of a teaching hospital.
“However, I want to share with you a discussion I had on Twitter with someone when I said we will not be able to open our airports and airspace as a result of the extension of the lockdown for normal operations and someone said;
“Kindly stop all the VIPs shuttle going on. It makes no sense to lock citizens up and allow governors to stroll in and out of Abuja. In the first instance, they carried this virus into Nigeria and now running around is not Okay.”
I said to the person that I agree with him but whatever is approved or whoever is approved to fly privately, governor or no governor is on an essential flight and it is addition and 98 per cent is related to COVID-19.
“There is no exception to governors. I have denied several of such flights. Including two governors from South-south, two from South-east and by the way, three of them are members of the APC and I think one is from North-central.
“For a flight to get approval to fly, it shows that it is diligently done. It must be essential, COVID-19 related or other essential flights like cargo that will bring in medicines or equipment or other things related to COVID-19 or our whole well-being like food. Please trust us and bear with us for this period but it will end soon by God’s grace,” he said.
As part of measures to curtail the coronavirus outbreak in the country; the Federal Government had on March 21 announced the closure of all the airports to all international flights.