• Expresses disappointment with pace of work
Kasim Sumaina in Abuja
The Minister of State for Aviation, Mr. Hadi Sirika, Tuesday disclosed that the new terminal currently under construction at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja would need additional $400million to $500 million to fully function.
The minister hinted this when he visited the airport for the inspection.
According to him, “the funds are needed to correct the challenges hindering the completion and full take-off of the terminal. Some efforts have already been put in motion to tackle the challenge as the ministry has made proposal to the federal government on how to source for the money.”
Speaking further, he noted that the project was initially billed to be inaugurated in December 2017 stressing that, “we have earlier on said that we will be able to finish this project by December 2017 but unfortunately, we are in January 2018 and the project has not been delivered and it is the first tour that we are undergoing as a ministry at the first day of work to find out from the contractors the state of things and what could be the hindrance and to find out why the project was not delivered and also to see the state of work.
He hinted that the quality of work was acceptable but “the pace is unacceptable. The project should have been delivered earlier than now and the contractor is just repeating what he said earlier on and some of the challenges he has been facing regarding some components of work and some additional problems. We need to ensure that this terminal can be use for the purpose for which it is intended.
“Unfortunately, some of the hindrances are very complex and some of them will delay this job and some of them are from the foundation and these are the problems that we found. Classical examples, not only here in Abuja, the four other airports.
“But here in Abuja, we have the problem of linking the new terminal and the old terminal. The blocking of the control tower, the control tower cannot see the other side of the airport and it’s an issue and also, we have the fire service blocking access to the terminal building making it very difficult for the aircraft to maneuver and utilise the apron.”