Arik Air has intensified its fight against drugs, crimes, fraud and other criminal offences that could tarnish the image of the company in particular and Nigeria as a whole.
Arik Air, Nigeria’s largest commercial airline, has intensified its fight against drugs, crimes, fraud and other criminal offences that could tarnish the image of the company in particular and Nigeria as a whole.
To ensure that the fight against crime is vigorously pursued, the airline’s Aviation Security department has been strengthened with the procurement of world class hi-tech security equipment that will facilitate the detection of all manner of drugs and explosives.
Arik Air’s Acting Managing Director, Mr. Chris Ndulue said the airline has been in the forefront of the fight against illicit drugs and related crimes. “We have invested lot money on the procurement of hi-tech equipment like the Morpho Itemiser which is the latest narcotics and explosives detector. The Itemiser is capable of detecting molecular and vapour from drugs.”
The airline’s General Manager, Aviation Security, Mr. Lachlan McNeil elaborated: “Arik Air has put in place an investigative team made up of ex-Police and Intelligence Officers from other services that mix with our personnel and guests without their knowing.”
In addition to the screening of passengers by Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) security personnel, Arik Air also carries out secondary screening of all passengers prior to boarding of any of its flights. The airline usually carries out a thorough search of its aircraft prior to boarding of a flight.
Mr. McNeil disclosed that Arik Air only recently engaged the services of a company, ICTS, to train 20 of its Security Profilers the latest technique of screening passengers while an additional 20 staff were trained in the use of the Itemiser.
Arik Air’s investment in the latest security equipment and training of security personnel has started yielding results with the recent arrest of a computer smuggling ring on one of its international flights while another gang was intercepted trying to smuggle watches and jewelries into a flight.
In addition to working closely with the various security and intelligence agencies in Nigeria and abroad, Arik Air has successfully intercepted many attempts of fraud, carriage of contraband and other dangerous goods on its flights.
Speaking on the latest fight against crimes and other related offences, Arik Air’s Chief Commercial Officer, Mr. Suraj Sundaram said the company has a zero tolerance for drugs and all forms of crimes. “We have issued a memo on the airline’s new heightened security procedures and we expect all staff, visitors and guests to comply with these measures. It is a fundamental requirement for continued employment in Arik Air that all staff should sign a copy of ‘Staff Confirmation of Acceptance’ document indicating receipt, understanding and agreement with the new security procedures.”
Mr. Sundaram stressed: “We remain committed to the application of innovative security and safety systems in our operations. We have well trained security personnel who ensure that this high standard of security and safety systems is adhered to.”
Arik Air is Nigeria's leading commercial airline. It now operates a fleet of 26 state-of-the art regional, medium haul and long haul aircraft. The airline currently serves 21 airports across Nigeria as well as Accra (Ghana), Banjul (Gambia), Cotonou (Benin), Dakar (Senegal), Freetown (Sierra Leone), London Heathrow (UK), Johannesburg (South Africa) and New York JFK (USA).
The airline currently operates over 130 flights daily from its hubs in Lagos and Abuja.