by Segun Odeleye
Now that the furore over the controversial purchase of the bullet proof cars by the Nigeria Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) on behalf of the minister of aviation, Stella Oduah, is subsiding, the minister is now forging ahead with the rest of her programs for the aviation sector.
Although some reports continue to insist that Pres. Goodluck Jonathan will take action against Oduah over her disregard for the laws of the land in that bullet-proof car purchase which was widely dubbed #Stellagate, the minister has looked reasonably confident in recent times, granting more interviews and allegedly sponsoring opinion pieces that speak favourably about her.
She was in Yola, Adamawa state on Saturday on an official inspection tour of the Yola International Airport. The minister said during the tour that international flights to and fro the airport will commence this year and that “all necessary machineries have been put on grounds to make this happen soon.”
Oduah also ordered the authorities of the airport to commence use of the newly built terminal before its inauguration. She said that she was pleased with the quality of work done at the airport, saying that it can compete with its contemporaries in the world.
According to her: “The official commissioning of the airport project is just a matter of time; for us to officially commission the Airport, we just need to do a little touch as the work has been completed save for some little things that need to be done. The terminal as it is now is comparable to any terminal anywhere in the world. We are proud of what we were able to accomplished, here, we thank God for the strength to be able to do that.”
The Managing Director of Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, (FAAN), George Orisi, on his part, said that international operations will commence immediately after the opening of the airport terminal. He said the airport terminal is efficiently designed with state-of-the-art facilities which include two laundries, shopping malls and better accommodation for passengers.
Orisi said: “You can walk from the checking area to the arrivals area. It allows people to mingle inside the terminal, allows us to have a lot of shops and commercial offering.”
He added that the cargo terminal project has also begun just as he said the lightening of the airport will soon be finished.