Ekiti Expends N16.5bn on Airport Project

Gbenga Sodeinde in Ado Ekiti

Ekiti state government has so far expended N16.5 billion on the state cargo airport that is still under construction.

The Special Adviser to Governor Biodun Oyebanji of Ekiti State on Budget, Economic Planning and Performance Management, Niyi Adebayo revealed.

He disclosed further that the state had allocated  funds in the 2023 budget  for the  procurement of navigational aids and lighting equipment, completion of the  departure and arrival lounge for the airport to commence full operations.

The special Adviser disclosed further that the sum of N16.5 billion so far utilised on the project was used for perimeter fencing, completion of the runway and  taxiway, terminal building and payment of  compensation for the farmers who whose farmland were acquired for the project.

Presenting the breakdown and analysis of the N113.5 billion 2023 budget in Ado-Ekiti, yesterday, Adebayo revealed that despite the inauguration of the airport last year, basic facilities and equipment were still not in place at the facility.

Former governor ,Dr Kayode Fayemi alongside the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika had on October 15, 2022, inaugurated the agro-allied airport located along Ado-Ijan-Ekiti road amidst pomp and commendations.

But the governor’s aide explained that presently, only military aircraft could land in the airport, adding that the control tower , passengers terminal and runaway
 were yet to be fully completed.

Adebayo stated that the administration of Biodun Oyebanji was committed to growing the state’s economy and enhance prosperity with adequate provision in the budget, noting that funds for further work on the airport which was designed to airlift the agricultural potential of the state and stimulate economic growth had been earmarked.

Asked about the condition of the airport, the special adviser said, “We can only land the military aircraft because we don’t have the full work of navigational aids.  Military aircraft can land with little or no assistance   from control tower.

“So, we need to have a functional control tower, build a new terminal where passengers can wait to board plane. So, those are the expenditure we need in the new year; but the runway is very good. 

“And of course, we need to provide necessary lighting infrastructure so that planes can land in the evening, even daytime when you have foggy situation because light help the pilot to see the runway better. So, those are the areas where expenditure need to go into.”

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