The federal government has formally announced that the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, would be closed with effect from 12 a.m.Wednesday, March 8 to April 19, in order for repair works to be carried out on the Airport’s runway.
This was announced by the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, at a world press conference in Abuja on Monday.
As has been announced initially, the airport closure will last for six weeks.
Also speaking at the Press Conference, Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, said the government has kept its promise to make Kaduna Airport ready for use as alternative.
This was re-echoed by the Minister of State for Aviation, Hadi Sirika, who added that the observations made by acting President Yemi Osinbajo during his visit to the Kaduna Airport on Friday had been “taken care of”.
He said the government has set up a website: www.abujaairportclosure.info, through which information will be shared with Nigerians.
It would be recalled that the decision to divert Abuja-bound flights to the Kaduna Airport during the period of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport closure has been criticized by some airline operators and outrightly rejected by some others.
According to Sirika, so far, only one international airline has agreed to use the Kaduna airport.
British Airways, South African Airways, Lufthansa, KLM and Air France, are some of the reputable international airline operators that had rejected to fly into the Kaduna Airport, citing security and safety challenges.
The Minister of State for Aviation has repeatedly rejected other options suggested by experts on how to go about the repairs of the Abuja Airport runway without necessarily shutting it down.
He has however insisted that the airport closure would not last one day longer than the scheduled six weeks.