The Nigerian Aviation Handling Company Plc (NAHCO) on Monday said it has installed a new cargo screening machine and anti-bomb equipment valued at over N68million at its general export cargo section.
The Director General of the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Harold Demuren, while inaugurating the equipment at Ikeja, described it as a giant step in the fight against trans-border terrorism.
“With equipment like this, we are safer and the travelling public and businesses can have some peace of mind,” Mr. Demuren said.
He said that NAHCO’s investment in security had buoyed government efforts at operating a 24-hour secure airport operation and attracting foreign investment.
“We want to open up Nigeria. We operate a 24 hours passenger terminal, but on the cargo side, cargo aircraft operate mainly at night. I have discussed with other agencies in the airport on how we can expand and make Nigeria the hub.
“The planes want to drop cargo and leave. But now, they drop the cargo on the tarmac and I am not happy about that. I want them to move cargo into your shed where it is safe and not on the tarmac where they may be tampered with.
“Now that we have this (screening machine), we are safe and it is better for all of us. With effective screening system like this, terrorists have no place,’’ he said.
Kayode Oluwasegun-Ojo, the Managing Director of NAHCO, said that the company was committed to safety of its operations and it would spare no effort to ensure safety and security.
“The major difference between what this machine does and others is that others are single view, so it is possible, for example, to use paper to shield an item and what you see looks like paper and this has serious implication for security.
“But this one has dual views, and it would give you complete view of an item in addition to the fact that when the old scanners were made, we were not exposed to the kind of risk we have now.
“And the kind of explosives we had then were different from what we have now. This can actually detect liquid,’’ he said.
He noted that the screening machine system was made up of The Rapiscan 632DV installed at the export shed of the warehouse and MO-2M hand held explosive vapour to be used at the import section.