By Chinedu EzeÂ
The US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has revalidated the Category 1 Safety Status given to Nigeria about eight years ago.
The safety status has been revalidated few months after the body carried out successful audit of the countryâ€™s aviation industry.
This was confirmed by a top official from the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) who told THISDAY that a letter conveying the revalidation â€Žwas received by the AuthorityÂ on Thursday.
The official said that the approval had corroborated the confidence expressed by the Authority that Nigeria did well in the audit, which took place few months ago.
The official also said that since after the first certification, Nigeria had made tremendous progress in the area of safety, especially under the current Director General, Captain Muhtar Usman.
Last August a team of inspectors from the United States FAA arrived Nigeria and re-evaluated the countryâ€™s aviation sector to try to find out whether it had maintained specified safety standards and closed safety gaps observed in the last audit.
The Category 1 safeâ€Žty Status allows Nigerian registered airlines to operate to the United States and since Nigeria obtained the certification in 2010 it has retained it because of progressive improvement in the country’s safety standard.
Some nations that had failed the audit in the past had to withdraw airlines registered in their country from flying to any city in the US.Â
Arik Air until a year ago had been operating to New York and some other Nigerian airlines had been designated by the federal government to fly to the US.