Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, was aboard a test flight from Kaduna International Airport that arrived at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport on Tuesday morning.
It is the first plane touching down, as the airport re-opens after a six-week closure for repairs on the runway.
On Monday, The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) certified the rehabilitated Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja safe and ready for commercial flight operations.
NCAA’s Director General, Capt. Muktar Usman, informed newsmen that the final inspection has been done and they are satisfied.
”Well as you can see, we have just done the final inspection of the runway rehabilitation and reconstruction of Abuja International Airport. It is done and it is quite satisfactory. We inspected yesterday and we made some observations but the findings that we found were not safety critical and today we found that they have been rectified.
“So, the airport, the runway is very ready to accept flight operations safely. By this we are declaring that the airport and its runway are quite operational at the time that has been determined as the official opening of this airport,” Capt. Muktar declared.
He added that the NCAA has “carried out the inspection and we have confirmed that the job has been done quite satisfactorily in line with the International Civil Aviation Organisation (ICAO) Standard and recommended practices.”
“The normal thing is to inform the aviation world through what we called, Notice to Airmen (NOTAM) and that has been done and all aviators now know the airport is ready for reopening.”
On calibration, he said: “nothing has been tampered with as far as the instrument landing system is concerned and everything is in calibration. Calibrations are normally scheduled and very soon this airport will also be calibrated along with other airports. It is not as if there is need for recalibration because nothing has been distorted. It will be normal routine calibration which will be applicable to other airports that are due for recalibration.”
Also speaking to newsmen, FAAN MD, Engr Saleh Dunoma, said “we are very ready. All the repairs have been completed on the runway.”
“Previously, when you come here, you see various construction equipment on the runway but today, you can see through from one end to the other. That is from runway 04 to 022, their is no equipment on site. The runway is cleared.”