- closed base on health reasons – Sirika
By Usman Usman Garba
Kano State Governor, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje has appealed to the federal government to reopen the Malam Aminu Kano International Airport MAKIA, Kano to allow for resumption of international flight operations.
He lamented that continued closure of the airport was causing hardship to international travellers from Northern part of the country even as the action is severely impacting of Ease of Doing Business in the state.
The governor spoke when he led a delegation of legislators, business, traditional and civic leaders to pay a visit to the Minister of Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika, in Abuja yesterday.
“The closure of MAKIA has impacted negatively on the business environment in Kano, which is the commercial nerve center of Northern Nigeria and even some West African Countries.
” We appreciate President Muhammadu Buhari for the completion of the International wing of the Mallam Aminu Kano International Airport, because it will further facilitate commercial activities and we fervently appeal for the resumption of international flight operations at the airport,” Gamduje reassured.
The governor expressed great concern over the effect of the continued suspension of international flights to and from the airport by passengers and service providers.
According to him, the state government has put in place all that was necessary to make the state healthy for flights, including mobilization of the populace for the COVID-19 vaccinations.
On his part, the minister assured that his ministry is favorably disposed to reopen the MAKIA for international flight operations, lamenting that the continued suspension of international flights to and from the airport is causing the ministry and its agencies huge revenue loss.
According to Sirika it does not make economic sense for government to spend so much money, as it has done in the airport, and just decide to leave it dormant, with the attendant degeneration on infrastructure, staff redundancy, revenue losses and hardship to travellers, amongst others.
He however, told the delegation that the decision to suspend international flights to and from the airport, like the ones in Enugu and Port Harcourt, were for health and security reasons.
The minister acknowledged the hardship faced by passengers and service providers patronizing the airport, promising that everything that was necessary for the resumption of international flight operations at the airport would be fast-tracked to ensure that it resumes soon.
He however, challenged Kano indigenes to create activities that will make the airport more viable through increased passenger traffic.