Top News

Absence Of Landing Light At Ibom Airport A Major Concern – Arc. Attah

The former Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Obong Victor Attah, has expressed concern over the continued absence of landing lights at the Victor Attah International Airport in Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.

This development, he said, has resulted in only daylight flights and, often, diversion of flights to nearby airports, either in Port Harcourt or Calabar, Cross River State.

During last month’s World Cup Qualifier match between South Africa and Nigeria, the South African squad could not fly directly to Uyo but had to be diverted to the airport in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.

Many other business travellers have experienced similar inconveniences following the absence of landing lights at the Ibom Airport in Uyo.

Attah said he suffered tremendously when his flight from Lagos to Uyo, scheduled for 5:30 pm, was cancelled because the runway lights were not working, forcing Uyo airport to operate only daylight flights.

The former governor, who spoke in an interview he granted journalists, said he could not understand why an airport should operate without night flights, adding that most airports depended on night flights to generate revenue.

Related: Gov Eno Seeks Partnership With Aviation Ministry For Expansion Of Ibom Air, MRO

“I really cannot understand; this is your main gateway; how can you not make sure it serves its purpose? Night flights are really what most airports depend on.

He also decried the inability of successive administrations in Akwa Ibom State to complete the maintenance, repair and overhaul facility at the Ibom airport, saying that it was a necessary facility for the West African region.

“We started an MRO project supported by all the world’s leading authorities on MRO that is a necessary facility for the West African sub-region, but to date, it is not operational, so I do not want to feel that I am criticising anybody. I am just wondering: are we saying they are not necessary, that the concept was wrong, or that they shouldn’t have been prioritised?

“Because I believe they were, and I would have thought that one should have continued with them because those were big things and there are even small things as well, but my worry is, Why haven’t these things been done or what have we done instead that is better?”

“It reminds me of those days when we didn’t have mobile telephones in the country; we used to drive to Calabar to make overseas calls, and you could only communicate with countries that have the same daylight time as yourself, and it was a serious setback.’’

The former governor, who also expressed displeasure over the inability of the state government to complete the Ibom deep-sea port sixteen years after it was initiated, said he was greatly pained by such failures.

Read Also: Development Of Ibom Deep Seaport, Oil Palm Refinery – Gov Eno Seeks FG’s Support

“I do not see how, after these number of years, we have not been able to do the Ibom deep sea port because, I know for sure, and this is without any debate or argument, the Lekki thing or Badagry thing that you see is copied from the concept we had for the Ibaka deep seaport and an industrial city, and they have come alive and are working, but we have not even built the port yet. Those types of things bother me, and I feel pained about it.”

He also expressed displeasure that the University of Science and Technology he established in the state was converted to a conventional institution, adding that the concept behind the university should not have been abandoned.

“The Science and Technology University that I started, and I had a very good reason for starting a University of Science and Technology, was converted into a conventional university, and I don’t see how that has benefited us more than a University of Technology, particularly the concept of a University of Technology that we had, which was a research-based university, and that was why we chose the waterside as its location.

Related Articles

Back to top button