Upgrading of airports in Nigeria grinds to a halt

Akanu Ibiam terminal
A graphic presentation of Akanu Ibiam terminal in Enugu Nigeria

Contractors performing work on terminals at Nigeria’s various airports have been forced to pull out of site due to lack of funds from the federal ministry of aviation. Only the five new terminals being built in Lagos, Port Harcourt, Kano, Abuja and Enugu, which have concession arrangement have construction still ongoing. Remodeling of the airports was aimed at improving the viability of the aviation sector.

Sources within government have revealed that there is enough money earmarked for the completion of all the projects and accused the accounting officer for the ministry of aviation of sitting on the funds in addition to redeploying all the directors who are monitoring the projects for the ministry.

The permanent secretary in the Aviation Ministry is also questioning the projects being built in Akure, Ibadan, Asaba, Enugu and Jos, saying that they were not priority projects. It is the refusal to pay the contractors that is holding back the completion of the expansion project at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos. Work should have been completed there by now and new chillers installed to stem the heat being experienced at the airport.

Airport remodeling is a major development programme of the present administration which ought to be completed by the end of this year but with funds failing to be released to the contractors, the target date for the completion of the projects would not be met.

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