Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has stated that the State Government will make critical interventions at the Port Harcourt International Airport to improve the international acceptance of the facility.
Governor Wike also expressed happiness that Turkish Airlines will commence International Flights to the Port Harcourt International Airport.
A report issued by Simeon Nwakaudu, Special Assistant to the Rivers State Governor, Electronic Media, stated that Governor Wike, speaking on Monday, June 24, during a Courtesy Visit by the New General Manager of the Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) for South-South and South-East Region at the Government House, Port Harcourt, said the Rivers State Government is committed to making the Port Harcourt International Airport the destination of choice in the country.
He said: “I will dualize the access road to the Airport from the Owerri Road Junction into the airport. I will also reconstruct the road leading to the VIP Lounge at the Airport.
“The State Government will also demolish the existing VIP Lounge and construct a befitting Lounge. The new lounge will be a storey building. You have made these requests, which I have granted”.
Governor Wike said that in addition to dualising the access road to the airport, the Rivers State Government will install streetlights on the road.
The Governor called on the Federal Government to complete the construction of the Domestic Terminal of the Port Harcourt International Airport.
“In the beginning, I pleaded that I be allowed to intervene in the completion of the Local Terminal of the airport, but they declined because of politics. Why can’t they complete the construction of the local terminal. Is it because it is Rivers State?”, he said.
He urged the authorities to forget political considerations and complete the local terminal in the interest of Rivers people and other users of the facility.
New General Manager of the Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) for South-South and South-East Region, Mr Felix Akinbinu informed the Rivers State Governor that the maiden International Flight of Turkish Airlines will land at the Port Harcourt International Airport on Tuesday, June 25, 2019.
He appealed to the Rivers State Governor to assist in the dualisation of the access road to the airport and the reconstruction of the VIP Lounge
The Airport Manager informed that Port Harcourt and Kano International Airports are being posted for aerodrome certification. He said the airport requires the assistance of the Rivers State Government.
These critical interventions by Gov. Wike, are coming in the wake of the temporary closure and reopening of the Port Harcourt International Airport, following the harrowing incident of an Air Peace aircraft, a Boeing 737 aircraft, which had skidded off the runway on Saturday, June 23, with 93 passengers and six crew members onboard.
The incident had occurred at about 3pm on the day due to slippery runway and the aircraft which had just arrived from Abuja airport when the incident happened, finally came to a halt in the nearby bushes, without any casualties and all the passengers safely evacuated.