By Chris Agabi
Two weeks to the opening of the Abuja airport runway to traffic, the Minister of State, Aviation Sen. Sirika Hadi Sirika, has said the runway is 75 percent completed.
He stated this after routine inspection of ongoing total resurfacing of the runway after its total failure.
The Minister said “I am happy to announce we are at 75 percent completion of Abuja airport rehabilitation. The programme of work is running as outlined” he said.
The minister would later twit @hadisirika over the completion level and his excitement over the scope of work done so far.
Our correspondent who visited the airport reported that the running lighting is being installed even as the asphalt work is almost completed.
Just last week, Sen. Sirika alongside the Minister of Information, Alh. Lai Mohammed inspected the entire stretch of the runway from runway 04 to runway 022 and saw the work being done at each point and expressed satisfaction over the pace of work done.
From the level of work done, the runway may be delivered ahead April 19th, the scheduled opening date but Sen. Sirika had foreclosed opening the airport ahead of the earlier announced date.
The minister also expressed satisfaction with the quality of work done. “There is a new technology where glass glide is put in the process of constructing the runway to reinforce it, to give it extra strength and prevent cracks and that is what we have done at the Abuja airport runway” he explained adding that “this is the first time any Nigerian runway is being treated with such material and that material is a 50 tonner. We had to fly it in to Nigeria to ensure that it comes in time for this job and you have seen samples of it” he said.
The runway being reconstructed at the cost of N5.8 billion by Julius Berger was closed on March 8, 2016.