The Aviation industry is to enjoy 5% interest loan rate through the Central Bank of Nigeria CBN, from 2021 as palliatives to cushion the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika said during the daily briefing of the PTF on Covid-19 Monday that there were two types of palliatives being organized for the industry.
He noted that apart from the one coming from the Federal Government through the Ministry of Finance and National Planning, they have organised one with the CBN which had been approved, adding that those interested in the pain would have to apply.
“There are two types of palliatives, there are the ones we are organizing through the CBN, it is not for airlines alone, it is go the Aviation Industry including travel agents, ground handling, catering, car hire etc. and off course the agencies, the palliatives is total, the one we are organizing with CBN has been approved but they would apply for loan and that loan would be at 5% from 2021.”
Sirika stressed that there is a template for applicants of the loans of how much each airline or each business in Aviation including ground handling, catering, restaurant anmong others would apply for.
“So everybody that is participating in this air economy is being looked out for in this palliatives.”
“The second component is the one that is coming from government through the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning, that is still being worked out and we shall Inform you when it is in due course.”
On physical distancing inside the cabin as flights are bill to restart, the Aviation Minister assured that passengers have nothing to fear in the spread of the virus.
On the testing of crew, he said they would be regularly tested in line with the Protocols the NCAA had issued them.
Sirka explains the workings of the aircraft cabin that would ensure the chances of the spread of the Coronavirus was minimal or reduced.
” You will sit once there is space, we will space and there are no space, we will sit normal, here are the reasons; because the wearing of masks, physical distancing, cleaning of surfaces, washing of hands , use of temperature gauge etc were all backed by science, our own is to ensure or make it safe, it ensures that we are safe, so also these are also backed by science and findings, detailed findings.We have explained why risk of contamination is extremely and highly reduced when you are in the cabin.”
Explaining further, he said, “As the cabin air is coming down into the cabin, it rushes from up down to the bottom and we are all facing front as we sit, in most cases except for the business class of British airways where you face each other but that one you are physically distant anyway, so because we are all facing this way and the airflow is not from the cockpit to the rear, no, it is from the top down and exit downwards and get real circulated through that filter with high efficiency pathway filter and comes back in because of that, the chances of the microorganisms, the chances of the bacteria and all of those particles to land on you is reduced even by that system of circulation itself. The barrier are many, the front seat is a barrier as well and we are all facing that direction and the airflow is coming down.”
“So should you sneeze, like we said you sneeze in your masks would reduce tremendously so it may escape yes but also wearing mine and once it escapes the veracity of the droplets would reduce tremendously as it is coming out because it is being stopped by the mask itself, so the veracity is reduced and the air is washing it down as soon as it comes out and am wearing my own mask as well, it is like a double protection if you like and for a brief moment its being circulating like 30 times in an hour if you like every two minutes, from Abuja to Lagos it happens like 30-35 times during the travel. So it is safe to say that no matter how we sit, from scientific viewpoint which is all about wscience and technology from that perspective, we are safe in an aircraft cabin.”