The Nigerian Airspace Management Agency says it has taken delivery of another consignment of critical spare parts required for the continuous service and operation of the Total Radar Coverage of Nigeria.
According to the agency, the consignment, which was cleared at the Apapa port in Lagos from Thales Group, in France, include MES1 1400A power supply modules, control units and other critical units that will be used by its engineers to effect repairs on any of the nine TRACON installations across the country as may be required to ensure optimal functioning of the system.
NAMA had last year decried the lack of spare parts to fix the nearly N28bn TRACON, saying that the critical air navigation facility, which was inaugurated in 2010, had been starved of supplies, contrary to agreements signed with the manufacturer, Thales of France.
TRACON was designed to make air navigation in the country a safer one by capturing the entire airspace to ensure that all aircraft in flight are seen by air traffic controllers.
The Managing Director of NAMA, Capt. Fola Akinkuotu, said on Sunday that the relationship between NAMA and the equipment manufacturer, Thales of France, had never been frosty as some media reports would have it.
“In fact, it has been very cordial and we are poised to continue to keep it that way. You will recall that we cleared some consignments of spare parts for TRACON last year from the same Thales,” he said.
Akinkuotu said apart from the spares already received, another consignment of spares had arrived at the Apapa port and was being cleared while other consignments were already being shipped to Nigeria from France according to the shipping schedule sent to the agency by Thales.
He said payment had been made for all consignments ordered for, adding that as part of the efforts to keep pace with global best practices, TRACON would in a few months’ time undergo a total reconditioning process that would ensure that the entire system attained the acceptable reliability level specified by the International Civil Aviation Organisation.
The NAMA MD explained that the process was a sort of turn-around-maintenance which would be carried out by the equipment manufacturer, Thales Group.
Akinkuotu said the acquisition of spares for TRACON was also in line with the agency’s decision to be proactive in maintaining the nation’s radar facility.