By Kasim Sumaina
The Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, has reiterated the federal government’s commitment to resuscitating and ensuring functional airstrips all over the country, to combat insecurity and boost commercial activities.
He stated this when a delegation sent by the Emir of Hadejia and led by a former Deputy Governor of Jigawa State, Senator Ibrahim Hassan, visited his office on Thursday in Abuja.
Speaking specifically on the Hadejia airstrip, he said many reasons have pushed for the resuscitation of airstrips among which were historical purposes and combating insecurity in the country.
Sirika, in a statement by the Director, Public Affairs, Mr.James Odaudu, noted: “As we are facing security challenges, siting functional airstrip in Hadejia will help in combating insecurity as the airstrip can be used by the Nigerian Air Force, police and of course civil aviation.”
He further added that Hadejia once doubled as a centre of learning, trade and commerce in Northern Nigeria.
“We are starting now by engaging aviation experts and consultants to come up with an assessment. In our plans, the airstrip is going to be managed in a such a way that there is a plan for future expansion in term of landmass and commercial activities,” the minister said.
He assured the delegation that everything would be done as soon as possible by the ministry to actualise it, adding that the ministry will also find an appropriate way of funding the project.
Earlier, the leader of the delegation, Senator Ibrahim Hassan, told the minister that they were in his office to appreciate the ministry’s effort towards resuscitating the Hadejia airstrip.
According to him, the ministry had shown seriousness towards the rehabilitation of the airstrip by sending experts and consultants to conduct an assessment.
He assured the minister of the Hadeija Emirate’s support towards actualising the project and commended him for the giant strides he had made in the aviation sector since his assumption of office as Minister of Aviation.