Air disaster was averted on Friday as security personnel stopped a 25-year-old alleged intruder from gaining access into an Air Peace passenger plane heading to Owerri from the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA) in Lagos.
Giving a graphic detail of the incident, officials of the airport, said the man was apprehended around the air field by Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) Aviation Security (AVSEC) personnel.
According to reports the intruder was apprehended at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA) Lagos when he attempted to access an Air Peace aircraft heading to Owerri.
The attempt by the AVSEC personnel on static guard duties at the area who rushed to stop his further movement to a taxiing aircraft (CS-TQU), led to struggle and had to call for a reinforcement, when the unarmed AVSEC personnel failed to stop him, as the intruder continued to resist arrest.
Apart from the reinforcement the AVSEC personnel also alerted the pilot of CS-TQU of the intrusion, and to delay the aircraft to allow for a successful apprehension of the intruder, before the intruder was eventually apprehended by the AVSEC personnel with the support of the reinforcement and was taken into custody for investigations.
Thereafter, the aircraft was advised to return to base for necessary safety/security inspections in line with standard procedure, before it finally departed Lagos at 10:16hrs with 171 passengers and 6 crew members.
The Managing Director of FAAN, Captain Rabiu Hamisu in company of the Directors of Aviation Security Services, Grp. Capt USA Sadiq (rtd) and Airport Operations, Capt Mukhtar Muye, the Regional General Manager (SW), Mrs. Victoria Shina-Aba and the Airport Chief of Security (MMA), Mr. S.M Mamman inspected the site of the incident and discussed with the Captain of the aircraft.
Captain CS-TQU who spoke with FAAN Management team, on the averted disaster, commended the action of the Aviation Security team, describing it as timely and professional action that protected the flight, adding that he was not even aware of any intrusion until he was alerted by the security team.
Speaking on the incident, Air Peace spokesman, Stanley Olisa who confirmed the development said while the man was attempting to access the aircraft, there was another private jet behind. It was the pilot-in-command of the private jet that informed the Air Peace’s pilot-in-command that a young man was trying to force his way into the aircraft.
They therefore alerted the Aviation Security arm of the Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), who stopped the man and whisked him away.