Minister rules out sabotage in Kaduna airport fire
Supervising Minister of Aviation, Mr Samuel Ortom, yesterday ruled out sabotage in the fire incident that gutted the control tower of Kaduna International Airport on Saturday.
Ortom, who is also the Minister of State Trade and Investment, during a visit to the airport, said the ministry setup a technical committee to unravel the remote cause of the fire and that their findings showed that there was no sabotage.
“I want to rule out the issue of sabotage, it is purely a technical problem that led to the fire and we will ensure that it does not happen again. My technical team is competent and carrying out an investigation to find out what led to the fire that engulfed the control tower, and until a report is given to us we can’t say what caused it. I am happy no life was lost in the fire on Saturday,’’ he said.
The minister said normal operations have since resumed, adding that planes have started landing at the airport.
“The technical team was able to restore operations; they were also able to use a mobile tower to control the system. In addition, Nigeria Airspace Management Agency (NAMA) was able to bring a mobile tower on standby. The good thing is that operations have resumed,’’ he said.
The minister said the ongoing renovation of the airport was part of the administration’s road map to transform the aviation sector.
“Twenty two airports are being remodelled, five have been completed and the rest are undergoing work,’’ he said.
He said the initial issues the government had with the contractor had been resolved, adding that adequate provisions have been made in the 2014 budget to ensure its completion.
According to him, five new terminals are being constructed in Kano, Port Harcourt, Abuja, Enugu and Lagos, which will be completed in 2015.
“We want to assure Nigerians especially passengers using this terminal that the airport is safe,’’ he said.