Aviation minister, Senator Hadi Sirika on Monday, commissioned a newly expanded 1,024 passenger capacity terminal and cargo facility worth N2.2billion.
This is he said the ongoing re-organisation in many of the aviation agencies would continue. He denied that the exercise was shrouded in secrecy, maintaining that President Muhammadu Buhari gave his approval to the shake-up.
In the most recent reorganization in the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Mr. Kabir Yusuf Mohammed replaced Capt. Rabiu Yadudu while Engr. Tayib Adetunji Odunowo, Director of Aerodrome And Airspace Standards at Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), replaced the managing director, Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), Mr. Mathew Lawrence Pwajok.
According to Sirika: “The re-organisation approved by Mr. President is an ongoing process and would continue to go. There is nothing under the carpet if it is being approved by Mr. President. Government is a continuum; they have their timeline, tenures, and time to come in and time to go like we all have our time to go. Governance of 200 million people is serious business. Whatever action or inaction you do, you are doing it on behalf of 200 million people.”
At the inauguration, Sirika said, the terminal would accommodate more passengers as the old terminal and its facilities were inadequate and overstretched. He said, the former terminal had an initial capacity for 256 passengers but with the expansion, the terminal now has capacity for 1,024.
Mr Yasir Tijjani, MD, Gloveshy Pro Project; Mr Kabir Yusuf Muhammed, MD, Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria FAAN; Senator Hadi Sirika, Minister of Aviation and Aerospace and Captain Rabiu Yadudu, former MD FAAN ..at the official commissioning of first phase of the expansion project at the General Aviation terminal , Lagos by Sen Hadi Sirika, Minister of Aviation and Aerospace on Monday.
“The project was conceived to address the decades-long limited capacity challenge of the terminal. You will agree with me that the geometric increase in population of Nigeria, which resulted in increase in passenger volume has overwhelmed available facilities at this terminal
“As part of efforts to address this challenge, the Federal Government at some point developed the Zulu terminal to complement the existing old terminal, but the capacity limitation situation still persisted.
“Oftentimes, particularly at peak periods, you will observe that facilities in this terminal are usually overstretched because the volume of passengers using the facilities far outweighs the capacity available.
“We therefore evaluated the situation, and decided to expand the terminal, as a short-term measure to address the situation. It is our intention to build a new and much bigger domestic terminal in the nearest future.
“The facility we are commissioning today is a product of that thought, and it is only the first phase of the project. As soon as we put this to use, we hope that the incoming administration will continue with the construction of the second phase.”, he said.
Sirika disclosed that the expanded phase 1 contains brand new protocol lounges, airline office spaces, VIP lounges, with the complements of conveniences that will enhance safety, security, and comfort of our esteemed passengers.
According to him, ‘The project started early last year, and I am glad that the first phase was completed in record time, and is being commissioned today. I am very confident that the provision of this facility will enhance passenger facilitation at this terminal, and will also improve the revenue generation of FAAN’.