Aviation Minister, Stella Oduah
The Federal Government will on Monday launch the new General Aviation Terminal (GAT) that has been expanded and totally remodelled.
It would be the first terminal out of 11 in the same number of airports to be launched as work which started last year was quickly completed within record time for such project.
Before the end of the year, it is expected that construction work at Benin, Owerri and Kano airports would be completed and the airports would be reopened.
This is the first major rehabilitation in all the government-owned airports under the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) in the last 30 years.
With increased capacity, the new GAT can take up to 1000 passengers at a time and it has been installed with new cooling system and modern passenger facilitation equipment and conveniences.
During the inspection of some of the airports where rehabilitation work was going on recently the Minister of Aviation, Princess Stella Oduah, said the level of work at some of the airports was over 90 per cent completed.
She explained that what government was doing was more than polishing and renovation, noting that in some airports, it involved reconstruction, including adding new structures as it was in the case of the GAT in Lagos where a new terminal has been completed to replace the aged contraption at the old domestic terminal.
“What we are doing goes beyond remodelling; we are doing reconstructing of the airports. We are doubling the sizes of those airports; we are changing all the facilities. So you can’t call that remodelling.
“Reconstruction is what we are doing to ensure passengers’ safety, to ensure that they get value for their money and most importantly we want airports that all Nigerians will be proud to have. That is what this administration is all about, a total transformation of the aviation sector,” she stated.
Reacting to the notion that it was a common practice in the country to unveil poorly executed projects hurriedly, the Minister said quality had not been compromised in the projects being executed.
“We have our quality control group working with them (contractors) at all times; we want to make sure we don’t play with customer safety which is why we are doing total restructuring and remodelling,” she added.