By Salawudeen Olawale
Some foreign nationals residing in the capital city have warned that closing the Nnamdi Azikwe International airport, Abuja, will make the country to lose huge income which can be used to help lift Nigeria out of recession.
One of the America Citizen, Peter Tower who spoke at the Abuja International airport warned on the gross endangering of the country’s businesses by closing her International airport for six weeks. “Where in the world did you hear that an international airport is closed for six weeks?” he questioned.
He made it known that “most foreigners are not willing to land in Kaduna, so there is every possibility that they (foreign businessmen in Abuja) will have to halt their business activities pending when the reconstruction of the airport runway is completed.”
When asked whether he will be travelling within the period of the closure, Tower said “No, I am grounded for six weeks, I can’t go to Kaduna, few days ago, two Garman Nationals were kidnapped in Kaduna, I will not go there” he vehemently objected.
Speaking to a staff of Japan International Cooperation Agency, Nigeria Office, who spoke under the condition of anonymity disclosed that, closing of Abuja airport will keep international businessmen away from the capital for the period of the runway reconstruction. None of her colleagues are willing to land in Kaduna, as well as her nationals.
She stated that Japan Embassy has already warned her citizens on the use of Kaduna airport due to security challenges been faced in the state, adding that, she will not be travelling when the airport in Abuja is closed.
“I will not travel during the period of Abuja runway reconstruction, I will not use Kaduna airport, and I do hope the Abuja airport will be opened from 20th of April” she stated.
Our investigations reveal that, many foreign nationals have expressed hesitations to travel when the Nnamdi Azikiwe International airport will be closed on the 8th of March till the 19th of April 2017.
In preparatory to the closure of Abuja airport, there seems to be an increase in air travel at the moment, as the business post witnessed a surge at the international airport. The surge is due to the fact that most air passengers are unwilling to go to Kaduna, thereby embarking on their journey on earlier dates.
South Africa and Egyptian Airlines confirmed that they are currently witnessing an increase in the number of passengers travelling at the moment.