Aviation Minister debunks plan to sell Nigeria’s airports

Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, has said there are no plans to sell the international airports  even though the Federal Government has no money to maintain them.

Speaking during a zoom call on airport concession on Tuesday, Sirika said that the government only plans to concession for a period of time, after which it would revert to the Federal Government because, according to him, there are no plans to put the assets of the country into the hands of private investors.

He said the airports are not performing optimally and are not being operated to its full capacity, hence the need to concession only the terminals of the international airports in Lagos, Abuja, Kano and Port Harcourt.

He also gave assurance that the labour unions would be carried along and that before any agreement is signed between the FG and the concessionaire, there would be structures in place to ensure that no workers in the Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) lose their jobs.

“Our airports are sub-optimal and they are not being operated to the capacity that can attain and government has no money to continue to invest in these airports. They are competing against healthcare, education, security, etc. That is why we want investors to come and invest so we can make more money and they would employ more people.

“The population growth is being affected so the airports are overstretched. We had 60 million people when Lagos airport was built, so our infrastructure must meet up with that number. We had 8 million passengers before but now, we are doing 19 million…”

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