Kaduna airport unsafe, insecure, Nigerian lawmakers say

Kaduna Airport[Photo Credit: NewswireNGR]

The House of Representatives on Thursday condemned the aviation operations at the Kaduna International Airport.

The lawmakers said the airport lacked safety standards for both domestic and international flights.

The condemnation is coming barely a month after the lawmakers passed a resolution supporting the Kaduna Airport to serve as an alternative while repairs are going on at the Abuja airport.

Speaking at the plenary on Thursday, the Chairman, Committee on Media Loan, Aids and Debt Management Adeyinka Ajayi (Osun APC) told the House that safety standards are not being adhered to at the airport.

“God forbid that an aircraft drops from the skies due to our own errors. This is what we should not pray to happen, it can happen to anyone” Mr. Ajayi said.

Mr. Ajayi also said aircraft manoeuvring and parking space is inadequate to accommodate the high number of aircraft now operating at the airport.

He shared his personal experience where he witnessed aviation fuel being discharged from haulage trucks into an aircraft without purifying the fuel.

Also contributing, the Chairman, Committee on Foreign Affairs Nnenna Ukeje (Imo PDP) noted that the space provided for passengers and parking of aircrafts was inadequate and could lead to accidents.

“The lives of passengers and aircraft are being exposed to danger at the Kaduna airport,” Mrs. Ukeje said.

She said she recalled how she spent several hours after landing at the airport trying to access her luggage.

Mrs. Ukeje added that “The Kaduna airport experiment has obviously failed.”

Another lawmaker, Hassan Saleh (Kano APC), said the airport is a total disappointment, adding that “an awaiting disaster is eminent”.

“Security in the airport is very poor, you can obviously see that security personnel are being overwhelmed by the crowd,” Mr. Hassan said.

The Abuja airport closure is in its third week, according to the original work plan by the Federal Government. The airport will remain closed for six weeks.

Of the foreign airlines that flew from Abuja airport, only Ethiopian airline is currently operating at the Kaduna airport, with others choosing to stay away despite government appeals.

The Abuja airport was closed to allow the repair of its only runway. The government opted to divert flights to Kaduna saying it was the best option despite criticisms from Nigerian engineers, aviation workers and others who argued that the Abuja airport runway could still be used while being repaired.


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  • Comfortkay

    Our lawmakers are nothing better than Agbero. Bunch of unreasonable fellows. They should have worked had to see that things work in the country instead of complaining.

    • musa aliyu

      Abi o!?

  • Abdullah Musa

    Let each Rep build his or her own airport from looted funds.
    They are afraid of the people that is why they are talking of insecurity.

    • thusspokez

      Let each Rep build his or her own airport from looted funds

      This is the ground breaking response you managed to come up with? Wow!

      • Abdullah Musa

        Government did its best.
        The security services were there.
        Quite unlike Nigeria even transport from Abuja to Kaduna was provided.
        Yet they are not satisfied.
        So why not build their private airports where foreigners can give them security?

    • Infoezone Infoezone

      Bravo. Read your statement again and clap for yourself. Its such a shame being here with you

      • thusspokez

        The poster is a genius! The comment deserves a Nobel Prize!

      • Abdullah Musa

        Who invited you, knowing that you are an intolerant being, lacking language appreciation?

  • Du Covenant

    Why is everyone so concerned?, after all what percentage of Nigerians travel by air?. Foreigners who are risk averse will not try flying into Kaduna anyway. Besides, it all boils down to our attitude on how we do things, no sense of planning for anything. Our very weird way of nation building is to concentrate everything in one place instead of distributing things all over the country. Had things been done in Nigeria strategically, this should never have been a problem, there would have been many airports across the country or around Abuja that would have picked up this traffic without any concern. MMA was build in Ikeja in the 70s , since then the country NEVER embarked on anything near it till today. Everything and everyone had to go through Lagos, the same with our seaports. Kano the first airport in the country has been neglected even though most aircrafts come into Nigeria do so via the Northern corridor, God forbid any emergencies, you have to fly 1 hour more to Lagos where everything is available. Initially Jos was to have an international airport, they killed the idea, the so called Abuja airport is even a disgrace if you see what countries for themselves, why on earth should Abuja have only one runway that is even below international standard?, I thought Abuja was going to be a planned FCT where everything is thought out and put in place? instead we are only good at embezzling every bit of money that is earmarked for any project. This lawmaker should stop complaining and suffer the consequences if he has to travel by air in Nigeria. A very shameful country indeed!.

    • thusspokez

      Imagine, Jigawa State has an International Airport (roll-eyes!). How many people even knows where Jigawa state is, let alone would fly to/from there. A show airport probably used once or twice a year to fly to Mecca only. What a waste of money. Some Northerners seem to like these sort of very money wasteful grandiose projects. What a wonderful psychological effect it can have on them, creating the illusion of progress and advancement.

      • musa aliyu

        What about the southern government? Apart from sharing the money what else do they do?

      • Du Covenant

        Unfortunately, this is the mindset I alluded to and as a result, despite how blessed Nigeria is we remain among the poorest nations in the world. We are constantly begging for others to come and help us without any sense of shame!. The countries we admire, adore and willing to die to visit did not build their countries the way we in Nigeria go about things. Who are you to determine whether Jigawa deserves a proper airport or not?. When emergency strikes mid air you want to find the nearest airport to land and save lives. In Germany Hilter deliberately built the famous autobahns all over the country to enable certain sections to be used by aircrafts when the need arises, the Americans took the same idea to build their InterState highways. Because we are blacks destined to be slaves all our lives we lack the ability to think into the future to do anything constructive, just full of hatred for another. You never know when faith will have it that you desperately need an airstrip in Jigawa to land safety. May God help you out of your wicked soul!!.

        • thusspokez

          Who are you to determine whether Jigawa deserves a proper airport or not?

          Well, am I surprise that you are yet another ultracrepidarian? But let me explain to you how projects are initiated in the West as I live there and have been involved in many a project.

          Politicians can make all sorts of promises but before any project is initiated, a feasibility studies is started; the cost-benefit analysis, the economic viability; the social and environmental impacts, technology are all assessed. If all these boxes are ticked then the project planning and funding phase kicks in.

          Now, to your question: “Who are you to determine whether Jigawa deserves a proper airport or not?” I say to you that it is not me to say, but the factors that I have stated above. These are the main factors that determine the feasibility of any project from a home extension to building an airport.

          I doubt that Dutse International Airport could tick even half of the assessments. Even the state governor says so; the airport is grossly underutilised, hence he is seeking partnership to make it economically viable as reported in PT some time again.

          Your ridiculous question may well be due to your lack of knowledge about the processes involved in initiating projects. The ignorance of many of you Nigerians never cease to amaze me.

          Because we are blacks destined to be slaves all our lives we lack the ability to think into the future to do anything constructive

          You can call yourself black, I call myself an African, but please don’t ask me the difference because if you cannot figure is out for yourself, it would be a waste of my time explaining it to you.

          • Du Covenant

            You have yet again displayed a mindset that is arrogant and self serving. You do not know what I do, where I am writing from etc….but, you are the expert who knows about feasibility, cost-benefit analysis, risk-benefit assessment, risk management etc….I never implied in my comment that Jigawa should have an International airport or we should have International airports across Nigeria. All I called for is to spread development across the country like normal societies do. If it is building airports/airstrips so be it because you never know when that airport will come handy to safe your life when disaster happens. In your little of world of ignorance you strongly believe you will never ever need to land in Jigawa so they deserve no airport. It is short-sighted and egoistic to think this way. When Hilter was building the famous autobahns across Germany while making sure certain segments were built to allow for planes to land if need be. You know what?, the Americans took this idea and built their Intersate highways too. This is called strategic thinking/planning and this all I am calling Nigerians to do rather than being dismissive about other parts of the country!. I wish you good luck in the little world you find yourself.

    • Rommel

      Nigerians in high places appear to be cursed, and my reasons are that these people travel all over the world and see what facilities look like but when it comes to their putting similar structures in Nigeria,they go for the most basic at the highest costs,this has been going on for decades and somehow,they think they are smart,it is a shame that Nigeria does not have an airport that could be the envy of anybody,that is how smart we are,small brain mentality that prevented them from expanding seaports to as far as Calabar,like you rightly observed,I need to register company,I have to go to Abuja

      • Du Covenant

        I replied you with more facts about what the country Nigeria but, PT did not post my comments. I was probably too blunt on a former communications minister who said “telephones were not meant for the poor man”. The truth can be a very bitter pill to swallow at times. Had the people in control in the 80s not stolen the money and provided telephones to every corner of Nigeria, Internet penetration in Nigeria would have been amazing using the infrastructure in place. Unknown to this so called minister, GSM technology was just around the corner and now everybody has a telephone regardless of how remote or poor you are. Science & technology is amazing, demagogues should have no place in any society. Additionally, my comment was not posted because I pointed out that Nigeria has not embarked on any meaningful infrastructural development since the 1970s. MMA in IKeja was built during this time but is now infested by roddens and criminals but, it all had to be in Lagos. The current Abuja airport is not befitting for Nigeria’s capital, why should it have only one runway?. Everything we build in Nigeria is not meant to serve generations to come like other normal people do because of corruption, we rather steal and share the money than to build magnificient structures that will put us positively on the world map. What is wrong with us?, why are we so short-sighted?.

    • xandril

      I tried to read your write up but got tired immediately I saw your comment as it relates to “how many people use it”? Have you thought of the revenue loss arising owing to the closure or all we care about is the oil money. So in as much as we get free money from oil, we can do away with other sectors. True Nigerians

  • dami

    Nothing satisfies Nigerians…we criticize everything and do nothing…or maybe the only thing that satisfies Nigerians is if they give them the money…forget building roads, airports etc…just share the money.

    • musa aliyu

      That’s it!

    • Rommel

      Something you know too well and you still ask

    • Ola

      Thank you my good citizen, this issue was discussed for weeks and months and everybody was given alternative arrangements as far as traveling by air was concerned.

      An arrangement like this must have some hitches, instead of complaining as it is typical of Nigerians, we should find ways to make things better until the runway is completed.

      Everybody complains about the rise in food prices but nobody wants to farm, and it is like the Niger Deltans complaining about the degradation of their environment and they keep blowing up oil pipelines, the average Nigerian complains about economic recession , but cannot put in an 8 hour work day in any productive venture.

  • thusspokez

    The Abuja airport was closed to allow the repair of its only runway. The government opted to divert flights to Kaduna saying it was the best option despite criticisms from Nigerian engineers, aviation workers and others who argued that the Abuja airport runway could still be used while being repaired.

    This shows that the Buhari administration chose Kaduna without any assessment of safety, security, capacity, environmental, logistics, impact, etc.

    Is it any wonder that none — except one — of the international airlines would use Kaduna? These airlines’ intelligence reports on Kaduna airport must be very negative, hence their refusal to use it as alternative to Abuja.

    My organisation is ran far more professionally than how the Buhari administration runs a country. A country like Nigeria (56 years old) should have its own sets of standards and methodologies or adopt ISO international standards to help it make quality decision; achieve quality administration and quality assurance. What a bunch of amateurs the Buhari’s administration is. I despair for Nigeria.

  • hh

    Hassan Saleh is a disappointment!

  • Rommel

    Are these lawmakers also now doubling as aviation experts?

  • We’ve missed the opportunities to modernize and to expand this airport. Instead of patching a single runway, sound policy should dictate the construction of additional runway(s) to decongest traffic on a single runway. Heavy traffic and the overuse of the only one runway exposes it to easy wear and tear. Atlanta Hartsfield-Jackson recently completed additional 2 runaways to keep up with the traffic. Patching up this single runway is I’ll-conceived and a waste.

    • Hamza

      There are plans on ground for the second runway in Abuja. According to them work starts this year. Probably captured in the bugdet.

      • That’s good news. Additional runway(s) are a better way to address a crumbling one way due to heavy traffic. Closing down an international airport is an humongous economic mistake. I’ll suspend my passage through this airport for the foreseeable future.