The Federal Government has pledged that the second runway of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport (NAIA), Abuja, will be ready in 12 months as part of its commitment to current initiatives in the air transport industry.
Festus Keyamo, Minister of Aviation and Aerospace Development, stated during a visit to the Abuja airport this week that the government had overcome the remaining difficulties on community reparations that had hampered the initiative's launch. As a result, the contractors are free to mobilize to the project site and begin work.
It will be remembered that the Federal Executive Council (FEC) sanctioned a total of N92.12 billion for the 12-month construction of the second runway in March 2022.
Similarly, at the end of President Muhammadu Buhari's tenure in May, the FEC granted N3.4 billion in post-contract consultancy for the construction of the second runway and associated amenities at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja. Keyamo alluded to his work with the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) to remove "obstacles" to the project. He stated: “As of today, the report I have is that the communities have started receiving the money we disbursed. The Chinese company handling the project said it would clear the place next week and move to the site. So, we are going to invite Mr President to commission it.
“For Abuja, as a capital city, it is extremely important that I work with relevant agencies, and the National Assembly to make sure we deliver the project within 12 months,” Keyamo said.
The second runway and its ancillary facilities, Keyamo said, “have been a controversial project since the time of Olusegun Obasanjo until now.” He added that the airport and the capital city as a whole benefit from the NAIA.
During the tour, Keyamo also announced that the government will step up efforts to upgrade chillers, lifts and escalators in airports across the country to enhance the traveller experience across the country.