FG Considers Reopening Of Kano, Enugu, Port Harcourt Airports – Minister

A file photo of the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika.

 

Nigerian authorities are considering the reopening of three international airports in the country, said the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika.

The affected aviation facilities are the Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport in Kano State, the Akanu Ibiam International Airport in Enugu State, and the Port Harcourt International Airport in Rivers State.

In his remarks on Monday at the briefing of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, the minister noted that the Federal Government planned to resume international flight operations at the airports.

According to Sirika, members of the task force will be visiting the airports for simulation exercises to ascertain their readiness for international operations.

He stated that a technical working group comprising relevant agencies involved in the facilitation of passengers had been set up to ensure that all standards required for seamless operations at the airports earmarked for the resumption of international flights were in place.

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The minister also announced the immediate resumption of catering services on domestic flights which were suspended at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic.

He explained that the decision was taken into consideration of the businesses involved in the provision of in-flight refreshments which have been adversely affected by the suspension.

Sirika, however, said that modalities and protocols for the resumption of the services would be worked and rolled out by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), which would be in line with international practices.

On the suspension of Emirates Airlines operations in Nigeria, he noted that discussions were ongoing to resolve the issues involved.

The minister also restated the country’s position on the impropriety of the extra COVID-19 tests the airline was demanding of Nigerian travellers.

He insisted that operations of the Emirates Airlines in and out of the country remained suspended, with the exemption of Cargo and Humanitarian flights.

FAAN Re-Opens Port Harcourt Airport After Fire Outbreak

The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) on Sunday announced the reopening of Port Harcourt International Airport after a fire outbreak which disrupted operations.

FAAN made the announcement on their official twitter handle noting that normal flight activities have since commenced at the airport.

“Following a careful evaluation and mitigation of the impact of the bush fire earlier reported around the Port Harcourt International Airport and the dissipation of smokes around the airside, the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria wishes to inform the general public that the airport has now been re-opened to operations.

“Normal flight activities have therefore re-commenced at the airport,” FAAN posted on Twitter.

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Flight activities were grounded on Saturday at the Port Harcourt International Airport runway following a fire outbreak.

The fire was reported to have prevented a Max Air flight from taking off while an Arik flight had to return to base.

A Dana flight from Abuja to Port Harcourt also reportedly had to return to the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, as it could not land due to the fire outbreak.

According to FAAN, the fire was caused as a result of bush fire.

The airport was then closed but eventually re-opened on Sunday.

FAAN Clears Port Harcourt Airport Runway After Air Peace Incident

 

The Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) said it has cleared the runway of Port Harcourt Airport, for normal flight operations to resume.

This is after an Air Peace flight, flying from Abuja to Port Harcourt on Saturday, skidded off the airport runway.

RELATED: Air Peace Plane Overshoots Runway In Port Harcourt

According to a statement by FAAN’s General Manager, Corporate Affairs, Mrs Yakubu Henrietta, the plane with 87 passengers and 6 crew members were safely evacuated.

“An Air Peace flight with registration number 5N BRN, flying from Abuja to Port Harcourt today, skidded off the Port Harcourt airport runway at about 1500hours.

“There were no casualties, however, as all 87 passengers and 6 crew members on board the flight were safely evacuated.

“The runway is already been cleared by the Authority so that normal flight operations can continue,” the statement added.

Air Peace Plane Overshoots Runway In Port Harcourt

 

A plane operated by Air Peace has overshot the runway of the Port Harcourt International Airport in Rivers State under heavy rainfall.

The flight was from Abuja to Port Harcourt with 94 passengers and 6 crew members on board.

According to one of the passengers on board, the incident occurred as the plane was landing at the airport. The plane came to a halt some 200 meters in the bush by the runway.

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The witness said all of the passengers have been evacuated and driven to the arrival area.

Meanwhile, the Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) has been notified of the incident.

“The Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) has been notified of the Air Peace flight from Abuja to Port Harcourt with 94 passengers and 6 crew members on board with Registration marks 5N-BRN.

“The aircraft skidded off the Runway to the left about 1300m from the Runway 21 threshold at the Port Harcourt International airport. All passengers and crew have been evacuated safely.”

The Bureau disclosed that it has dispatched investigators to the site of the accident to ascertain the cause and damage.

“Accident Investigation Bureau has dispatched investigators who are on their way to the site.”

Photos: Port Harcourt International Airport’s New Terminal

President Muhammadu Buhari inaugurated a new international terminal for the Port Harcourt International Airport on Thursday, five years after the project was initiated by the Federal Government.

The new terminal has been lauded by many with the Minister of State for Aviation, Hadi Sirika, hailing its capacity and promising that a new domestic terminal will be ready soon.

See photos of the new terminal below:

 

(UPDATED) Buhari Inaugurates New Terminal At Port Harcourt International Airport

President Buhari arrives in Port Harcourt for the inauguration of the new terminal.

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has inaugurated the new international terminal of the Port Harcourt International Airport In Rivers State.

President Buhari opened the new terminal on Thursday at a ceremony attended by Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike, Minister of State for Aviation Hadi Sirika and several other top government officials.

The President arrived at the state capital, Port Harcourt around 12:20 pm in what was his first official visit for the inauguration of the project.

The new terminal is one of four built with a $500 million loan taken from China in 2013. Nigeria provided $100 million as counterpart funding for the projects.

The projects were expected to be delivered in 18 months but the new terminal is being commisioned five years after.

The new international terminal in Port Harcourt is the first to the completed with Abuja, Kano and Lagos to follow.

See photos of the terminal below:

A combination picture of the new terminal

 

Private Operators To Manage Lagos Airport, Three Others

Lagos AirportThe federal government has announced plans to concession four major airports as part of efforts to develop and secure the aviation sector and diversify the nation’s economy.

Addressing aviation industry players ‎in Abuja, the Minister of State for Aviation, Captain Hadi Sirika, announced that the airports in Lagos, Abuja, Kano and Port Harcourt will be managed by private sector operators.

He also announced plans by the federal government to establish aviation development bank and an aviation university to provide funding and quality technical manpower for the industry.

It was the first aviation stakeholders’ forum since the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari came on board.

The Minister reiterated the commitment of the federal government to fast track the development of the sector through public private partnership.

He used the occasion to announce the streamlining of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) and the creation of employment opportunities for Nigerian pilots.

Although the presentation of the Minister received an applause from the stakeholders, some of them expressed concerns about the activities of some agencies under the ministry.

Others appealed to the federal government to urgently address the challenges being faced in the industry.

The one day forum which attracted airline operators, pilots and captains of the aviation industry is aimed at strengthening the sector towards efficient service delivery.