House Of Representatives Advocates 10 Years Dev. Plan To Improve Airport Infrastructure

House Of Representatives Advocates 10 Years Dev. Plan To Improve Airport Infrastructure

…To Intervene In Debts Owed FAAN

… As Agency Plans To Provide  Mono Rail From  Ikeja Transport Terminus To MMIA 

 

The Chairman, House Committee on Aviation, Honourable Nnolim Nnaji has appealed to the Federal Government to create a consolidated account from the 25 per cent remittance of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) and put in place a 10-year developmental plan to take care of airport infrastructure.

This is just as the oversight function on the agencies in the aviation industry enters day two, having carried out similar function on the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency(NAMA) on Wednesday.

Nnolim made the appeal shortly after a tour of facilities managed by FAAN at the Murtala Muhammed Airport (MMA), Lagos in company of the Managing Director, FAAN, Capt. Rabiu Yadudu and other management staff of the agency.

He said that the appeal became necessary in view of the fact that FAAN’s budget allocation would be enough to carry out the huge developmental upgrade the agency has embarked on.

He also assured FAAN that the Committee with the support of other committees, would intervene in debt owed FAAN by Asset Management Company of Nigeria (AMCON) managed airlines as the Committee would not allow the agency bear the burden alone.

Speaking further, he said, “Well, It’s not under our committee’s responsibilities but as members of House of Representatives and as stakeholders we will not allow FAAN to carry the debt alone. We are definitely going to pursue it. Luckily we also have people that are in the finance committee as members of the aviation committee so they will come together and see it as a huge burden on us and see how we can support FAAN.”

He stated that improving airport infrastructure was critical not just to aviation as an industry but to Nigeria as it would explore other areas of development.

According to him, “We believe FAAN needs funding like every other agency in the aviation sector, But part of our plea to Federal Government as way of helping FAAN as a way of aviation infrastructure is that the 25% remittance of FAAN to the Federal government that Federal government should find a way of creating a consolidated account where these funds be remitted to and create a 10 year developmental plan to enable FAAN come up with a 10 year developmental program on how they should put their infrastructure.”

He continued, “It is not just about the yearly budget but it’s about creating a 10-year plan that can enable them have long term projects that will live beyond a managing director. The problems we are having is that an MD would come in and want to create their programme, but if you have a 10-year plan that the federal government is involved through the ministry of finance, budget and other agencies, we have a consolidated account so that whatever project that is coming will live beyond the FAAN management.”

The Committee Chairman said the security situation on the roads has made more people turn towards using air transport as a means of transport and that this gives the country a unique opportunity to improve on the sector’s infrastructure tremendously.

He contended that investment in aviation is important because as the first point of call, the gateway will tell an investor whether to proceed into the country and invest or leave, stating that infrastructure development should be seen as an all-encompassing thing for national development, not just FAAN.

In his words, “Look at what is happening in Nigeria today, the security situation is bad on the roads and this is an opportunity to improve on the aviation industry because a lot of people are now looking towards the airports and businesses, we cannot talk about investment, an investor’s first point of call is the airport, if you have a good airport an investor who comes in would want to double his investment; if you also have a bad airport an investor will look down on the country and probably good back with his money. So I think airport infrastructure should be very critical, not just to aviation ministry or FAAN but also to Nigeria because it’s going to explore other areas of development.”

Earlier, the Managing Director, FAAN Capt. Hamisu Yadudu informed the Committee that FAAN intends to provide a mono rail from the Ikeja Transport Terminus to the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA) to ease facilitation.

He stated that FAAN was seeking the House support to tackle some of the challenges that have prevented the authority from developing airport infrastructure including the backlog of high debts arising from prior year’s revenue generation.

On infrastructure, Yadudu said that some need to be in place including rehabilitation of the domestic and international runway and completion of taxiway B and Air Field Lightening (AFL) of domestic runway to ensure the MMA is used optimally.

According to him, “We have two runways 18L and 18R but once is dusk one becomes useless because it can only take daylight operation and that is why we need to provide AFL so in case you have to shut a runway down you can use the other.”

Some of the facilities visited by the House Committee on aviation includes: FAAN Training School, the Power House, new MMIA Chinese-Nigeria funded terminal as well as the Airside between the domestic Runways 18 Left and international 18Right.

 

 

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