DG NIMet HOSTS CHAIRMAN, UNITED NIGERIA AIRLINES
The Director General/ CEO of the Nigerian Meteorological Agency (NiMet), Professor Charles Anosike, today played host to the Chairman of United Nigeria Airlines, Chief Obiora Okonkwo who was on a courtesy visit to NiMet headquarters in Abuja. Chief Obiora Okonkwo who was accompanied by his Director of Administration, Mr. Linus Awute oon, mni, said he was in NiMet to pay courtesy visit and congratulate a blossom.
“I am very delighted and happy that such a person of this calibre is given opportunity to prove himself. I have no doubt that he would bring the necessary leadership that will reposition NiMet”.
Speaking further, Chief Okonkwo who isa user of NiMet services, a major stakeholder and operator of one of the leading private airlines in Nigeria, disclosed that as an operator in the aviation industry, he has always looked for a moment where there would be a closer collaboration between the NiMet and the airline operators.
Chief Okonkwo who underscored the critical role weather plays in our lives, urged NiMet to bring this to the frontline to attract the necessary attention of the public.
“I really think that for us in the aviation sector, we have to find a way the professional information or forecasts that we have about weather is out at our doorstep one week ahead. My plea to you is that this information about weather that you get should not be kept to yourself, it must be made known to the public, as it affects them.
Therefore as an operator from the aviation industry, it is high time we looked for a very good collaboration to support NiMet to make sure it’s weather situation is made to the public”, he explained.
Chief Okonkwo noted that often when they had to tell travellers about flight delays or cancellations due to weather, this should not lead to travellers vilifying or assaulting operators as sometimes these delays are not caused by the operators.
He raised concerns about the government always talking on the sides of the travellers and the travelling public, but that operators also have their rights. He however said with improved infrastructural provisions and investment in some of these airports, no matter how low visibility is you can still land in that airport.
He therefore called on the DG NiMet, Prof. Charles Anosike to liaise with all the sister agencies in aviation to come up with a very compulsory demand that operating airports must meet certain infrastructural requirements for aircrafts to be landing there.
Concluding his remarks, Chief Okonkwo disclosed that it was his first time visiting NiMet and described it as timely while he exppressed hope that ” with this new leadership you have, you will reach out and work with all that are concerned to see how we can make this happen for the aviation industry”, he said.
In his response, the Director General NiMet, Professor Charles Anosike thanked him for the visit while assuring him that all he said have been noted and that in the course of the collaboration more insight will be given to him with regard to the assets and infrastructure NiMet has at the airports.
“We will give you more insight so that you know the strength and what we need to strengthen in this industry. So I thank you for this visit and we are looking forward to this collaboration. We will address all these issues and improve the way we work with the airlines because it is a regulated environment. Am sure you know that we have been instrumental in the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) audit score we received”, he said.
In commemoration of the visit, both parties exchanged gifts/souvenirs.