SAHARANEWS – Southeast Governors’ Forum on Thursday called on the Federal Government to include the expansion of the tarmac of the Akanu Ibiam International Airport Enugu in the planned rehabilitation work at the airport.
The Chairman of the Forum, Gov. Dave Umahi of Ebonyi, made the call when he briefed State House Correspondents after a closed-door meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
He said the call had become imperative in order to accommodate bigger aircraft at the airport.
“I came to see him on behalf of our people on the closure of the Akanu Ibiam International Airport Enugu.
”We are very happy with him for ordering the closure of the airport consequent to our letter to him to intervene and that closure has saved a lot of lives because if you land at that tarmac you will see that the tarmac was gone.
”We are aware it wasn’t constructed by the present administration but the tarmac became bad as soon as it was completed.
”So, we have discussed the timeline for the completion. We are all aware that towards December, we have a lot of heightened social-economic activities in South East and Enugu is our base – it’s our capital, what Kaduna is to the north, it’s what Enugu is to the South East.
”So, we pleaded with Mr President for the extension of the tarmac so that it can accommodate bigger aircraft;
“We pleaded with Mr President to do what he did when we had the same issue with Abuja International Airport, which he intervened in a number of ways.
”He provided a number of palliative like buses with escorts armed, provided helicopters (though the government didn’t pay for that but they paid for vehicles) which they did through a number of transport companies,” he said.