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Airport gadgets, irrigation projects: FG approves N7.5bn

The Federal Government has approved contracts worth N7,499,603,500 for surveillance equipment for the Kaduna and Port Harcourt airports and an irrigation project augmentation in Adamawa State.

The Ministers of Aviation, Hadi Sirika and Water Resources, Sulieman Adamu, revealed this to State House Correspondents after the weekly virtual Federal Executive Council meeting chaired by the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

Sirika disclosed that the Council approved contracts worth N1,499,603,500 for surveillance equipment for the Kaduna and Port Harcourt airports in Kaduna and Rivers States respectively.

He said the approval is for the award of contracts for the design, supply and maintenance of mobile surveillance observation systems with remote controlled license and these are for the airports of Port Harcourt and Kaduna and it will continue to other airports progressively.

“We are beginning with the first two but it will continue with the remaining airports in the future and the contract sum for this particular procurement is N1,499,603,500.00 including the 7.5 per cent value added tax and it will be delivered within 30 weeks.”

Also, the Water Resources Minister, Sulieman Adamu, said the Council approved the augmentation of N6 billion for the Chochi irrigation project in Adamawa State.

He said the project which began in 1988 has suffered several setbacks before it was finally re-awarded in 2006. However, the hindrances continued until it became impracticable to continue the project on a budget that no longer reflects the current day price of commodities and Forex.

Adamu explained, “At the time it was awarded, diesel was very cheap. But now diesel is so expensive. So, we provided a solar component to provide energy for the pumps, to irrigate the land and this is one of the reasons in addition to variation of prices, foreign exchange fluctuation that calls for a review of this project, seeking for augmentation of about N6bn and an extension of time to complete the project.

“Rather than terminate the contract, we feel it’s better to just continue by reinforcing the efforts of the contractor through a joint venture with another company which is a Nigerian company, Messers Hydro Source and Resources Limited.”

The Minister who announced that Nigeria will soon conclude a Bilateral Air Service Agreement with Canada, explained that this is in line with the Chicago convention, to which both countries are signatories.

In his words; “The highlights of the Bilateral Air Service Agreement between us and Canada involve the granting of rights and privileges as well as the designation of airlines authorisation, withholding, revocation, suspension and limitation of authorisation, application of national laws and regulations.”

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