Some airline experts on Saturday in Lagos urged the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority, NCAA, to conduct neuropsychological tests for pilots and co-pilots operating in the country.
They told the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, that the exercise would help in ascertaining their mental fitness.
They said it would help to avert incidence like the recent ill-fated Germanwings plane that crashed on March 24.
Capt. Dele Ore, President, Aviation Round Table, said NCAA should mandate all pilots and co-pilots to go through a mental fitness test before entering a cockpit.
Ore, a flight captain in the defunct Nigerian Airways, said that the call in compliance with the International Civil Aviation Organisation, ICAO, a U.N agency that sets global aviation standards.
He urged all airlines to also commence the test for all their personnel to avoid further occurrence.
Ore said that all airlines operating in the country should employ more medical personnel to examine pilots’ state of mental and physical health.
Ore said the airline should not relent on its oars at ensuring that pilots and co-pilots were medically fit.
Capt. John Ojikutu, urged the NCAA to introduce a “mood disorder” protocol for airline personnel.
He said the nation’s airlines should make it compulsory for all pilots and co-pilots to undergo a periodic medical examination, including a mental assessment before entering the cockpit.
He said that every airline’s primary responsibility was to ensure that the safety of passengers was not compromised.
“Until the ill-fated Germanwing flight, there was little done on the screening of airline pilots for mental problems in spite of regulations in the U.S., Europe,” he said.
Mr. Samuel Adurogboye, Deputy General Manager, Corporate Affairs, NCAA, said that the common cases relating to pilots health the agency handled were eye sight issues, obesity and heart-related issues.
He said the authority always carried out six-month periodic medical test on all pilots, including foreign ones operating in the country.
According to him, pilots who violate the rules and regulation of the authority had always been sanctioned.
Adurogboye said foreign pilots operating the country were usually made to undergo the NCAA examination and were issued with NCAA licence to operate if successful.


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