Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, has restated that the Dominion Hangar and the Evergreen Apple of Nigeria (EAN) Limited, domiciled at the heart of Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA), must be demolished to make room for the building of an aerotropolis, otherwise known as Airport City, along that axis.
He had earlier announced plans to also demolish all the agencies’ office buildings along the airport access road from the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) headquarters to the former office of the National Safety Investigation Bureau (NSIB). This is because the Federal Government has concluded plans to build a light rail that will connect the local and international airport terminals.
The two hangars marked for demolition include: Dominion hangar, owed by Bishop David Oyedepo, founder of the Living Faith Church Worldwide and Evergreen Apple Nigeria Limited, owned by the former Director General of Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA), Dr. Harold Demuren
Sirika made the disclosure in Lagos, on Saturday, at the unveiling of the N12 billion fire tenders for FAAN, adding that the government would be signing a contract this week to build a rail line connecting the international and domestic airport terminal in Lagos.
The Minister said the marked hangars would have to give way for the airport to be more efficient, adding that it is a $300m investment over there.
”And they can’t sit there in the public interest and we would certainly shift them somewhere, it has to go. You cannot deny this city Lagos and the country in general from the use of their airport.
”When we demolished the AIB building that belongs to us, some people say it is to move them to Abuja, they have never been to Lagos, their headquarters is in Abuja, and if the entire country is to move to Abuja, what is small AIB OF 200 people? I don’t need to demolish their building, if I say go and he doesn’t go, I fire him, I appointed him, big deal”.
He said the agencies have been directed to put together documents of all safety and security-critical items that would make the industry more efficient, and more profitable for posterity to form his handing over notes.
”Government is a serious business, if there is no government will not be able to exist, so, what needs to be done will be done”.
While applauding the Federal Government for coming to their aid in terms of providing firefighting vehicles, Managing Director/CE of FAAN, Capt Hamisu Yadudu, said that, in acquiring the vehicle, the Authority strictly adhered to all regulatory automotive standards for major firefighting vehicles.
The renowned aviator disclosed that the vehicles would be deployed to MMA Lagos, NAIA Abuja and MAKIA Kano, while they are also processing additional vehicles for Port-Harcourt and Enugu.
He assured that comprehensive training for the end users of these vehicles and mechanical units would be given.
“This is to ensure the vehicles are not only used as specified by the manufacturers, but they would also be maintained accordingly. In addition to acquisition of the major firefighting vehicles we have procured eight new water tankers for continuous agent applications and more will still come. Additional eleven ambulances were also procured to replace the obsolete ones that were bought in 1996.
“For the first time, the Fire Chiefs have their Response Commanders’ Vehicles, the two new Prado jeeps were deployed to MMA and NAIA respectively, more will also be procured in due course. We have also taken delivery of Aircraft Removal and Recovery Equipment that can handle critical aircraft coming to our airports. We also enhanced the provision of a dedicated water supply with hydrants,” he stated.
According to Yadudu, a number of dilapidated Fire Stations were renovated and provision of new ones in Kano and Enugu are in the pipeline.
“FAAN Management dedicates these ten new Aircraft Rescue and Fire Fighting vehicles today, to demonstrate our continued and elevated safety focus for passengers, aircraft and other airport users. It will boost the certification of international airports in Nigeria, which would increase patronage from more international flights and further enhance the confidence of international investors in our nation,” Yadudu said.