President Muhammadu Buhari has expressed concern over the enormous debt profile of Nigeria’s aviation sector, saying that his administration would act quickly to redress the situation.
Speaking at the Presidential Villa, Abuja, after receiving a briefing from the Federal Ministry of Aviation, Buhari said, “I am concerned about the enormous debt profile in the aviation sector. The Federal Government has to do something quickly because safety, security and international respectability are involved here.
“Our airports are the windows through which people see our country. Anybody coming into the country will likely come through the airports.
“If we cannot secure and maintain our infrastructure, it will reflect very badly on us.”
The President directed the Ministry of Aviation to speed up all processes and projects relating to the safety and security of Nigeria’s air transport system.
He also directed that counterpart funding for the upgrading of the international airports in Lagos, Abuja, Kano, Port Harcourt and Enugu, should be captured in the 2016 budget.
Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Aviation, Binta Bello, told the President that the five new international airport terminal buildings were designed to meet the best international standards.
The five terminals, she said, could cater for 62 million passengers annually when completed in the first quarter of 2016, with Lagos moving from seven million passenger capacity to 25 million; Abuja, from five million to 16 million; and Kano, Port Harcourt and Enugu, will have the capacity for seven million passengers each.