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The Minister of State for Aviation, Hadi Sirika, told journalists in Abuja on Monday that the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, will be closed for six weeks in February and March 2017 for total repairs on the runway.

The minister said the closure will allow Julius Berger carry out total re-construction on the badly damaged airport runway.

He said while the runway would still be put to use under the six months of rehabilitation, the six weeks would allow the mid-section of the runway to be reconstructed.

According to him, President Muhammadu Buhari has approved the reconstruction through the emergency procurement procedure for work to commence.

He said palliative repairs had been ongoing on the runway in the last three months, because the government could not afford to close down Abuja airport for a long time because of the centrality, economy and the importance of Abuja to the general administration of the country.

“From start to finish of the runway, it will take six months. However, we will be using the runway almost throughout the period except for about six weeks when the runway will be closed.

“That is when we are going to do the mid-section of the runway.

“The government has accepted the design done by the contractor. The runway will last for than 10 years on completion early next year,” he said.

Written by Okolo Ezinne

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