The much desired construction of a second runway for the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport Abuja got a boost on Wednesday as the Federal Executive Council (FEC) approved the sum of N1.7 billion for consultancy services for the project.
The plan of the government is to complete the procurement of the second runway if awarded, before the end of the administration.
Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika disclosed this while briefing State House correspondence at the end of the 3rd virtual meeting of the council, presided by President Muhammadu Buhari.
The amount, he said, covers consultancy services for the design of the new runway.
“Today in council, a memo from the Ministry of Aviation was considered; and it is the consultancy services for the construction of second runway here in Abuja. The contract went to a consortium of consultants for the total contract sum of N1.7 billion”.
“This includes 7.5 percent VAT and also the exchange rate for the dollar component of N360 to one dollar, and this is what caused the seeming increase in the last estimated figure” he explained.
The minister revealed that the consultancy aspect of the project was for a period of 12 months, and that a lot of work had already been done in the procurement consultancy services, adding that the process would be fast-tracked.
The Abuja airport was closed for 6 weeks for extensive repair work on its only runway in March 2017 giving rise to the urgent need to pursue the construction of a second runway.
The Ministry of Aviation is on record to have beaten its own deadline for the repair of the runway in 2017, as it was completed and reopened a few days earlier than expected which was applauded by the people as unprecedented.