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NAMA Staff dies on duty at Abuja Airport

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Abiola Seun

A staff of the Nigerian Airspace Management Authority (NAMA), Aniekan Inuk Effiong, slumped and died on duty in the early hours of Monday.

Effiong, who is an Air Traffic Controller at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, reportedly slumped while at his duty post at the approach radar of the Abuja airport.

It was gathered that the deceased slumped but because of vehicular restrictions to the Total Radar Coverage of Nigeria (TRACON) site, he could not be rushed to the hospital.

“Before they could get a vehicle and rush him to the hospital he passed on,” the source said.

The source said, “While doing all these, may I appeal that the restriction of vehicle to the TRACON site be reviewed immediately while stress test carried out on the surviving ones.

“I wish to appeal to the authorities particularly his immediate constituency NAMA, the magnanimous Minister and DG NCAA to please come to the immediate aid of his young family with the hope also that he will be compensated adequately to encourage others.

” I humbly submit and seek for prayers for God to forgive his shortcomings and accept him in his bosom.”

However, NAMA has confirmed the death of the officer, saying Effiong was a hardworking and dedicated staff who died at the prime of his career.

In a press statement by the general manager, public Affairs, Khalid Emele, the agency  said the entire NAMA community will miss him.

“The Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) hereby announces with utmost grief, the passing of Mr Aniekan Inuk Effiong, an air traffic controller with the agency, at Abuja station, today, the 22nd of November, 2021.

“Until his death, late Effiong was an Assistant General Manager, Operations.

“Mr Effiong reported to duty at the Abuja Approach Radar Control (TRACON) on the 21st of November 2021 (yesterday) at 6pm without any sign of illness whatsoever. He was to close by 7am the next day (today). However, at about 4am this morning, he experienced difficulty in breathing.

“FAAN ambulance was called to evacuate him to the nearest medical facility. He was immediately taken to the Air Force base clinic where he died.

“Mr Effiong was a hardworking and dedicated staff who died at the prime of his career. He will be missed by the entire NAMA community.”

Recall that there have been concerns over the dearth of ATCs in NAMA, prompting the management to even recall some officials from retirement.

This is because another ATC died about two weeks ago, making it two key technical staff of NAMA that would pass away in a space of two weeks.

The first deceased, Mr. Francis Anwetin, the ATC operations manager at Asaba Airport was hit by a vehicle on close of business.

He reportedly died on the spot right in front of the airport gate.

Officials say the loss of the two ATCs have further depleted the rank of Air Traffic Controllers in the aviation sector.

© 2021, maritimemag. All rights reserved.

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