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Legal battle looms over planned demolition of private hangars at MMIA

Despite the advice by the Senate, the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) is set to demolish some private hangars inside the Murtala Muhammed International…

Despite the advice by the Senate, the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) is set to demolish some private hangars inside the Murtala Muhammed International Airport (MMIA).

This is to enable it to expand the new terminal being constructed by the China Civil Engineering and Construction Corporation (CCECC).

The affected agencies and private hangars which were said to have been given notice of relocation include the Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB-N), Caverton, Dominion, Evergreen Apple Nigeria and ExecuJet hangars.

Also affected are the Nigerian Airspace Management Agency (NAMA), the Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) and the towing companies close to the AIB-N regional headquarters in Lagos.

There are fears that the relocation order may lead to legal battle as the affected entities are said to be threatening legal battle, insisting it would be impossible to relocate in two weeks.

Daily Trust reports that the planned demolition was to allow the contractor building the terminal to use the offices to be demolished as apron.

It was learnt that the failure to get the needed cooperation to carry out the demolition is what is delaying the new terminal whose completion date has dragged from the beginning of last year.

A source said, “Ramp work for the new international terminal is almost completed but one side of the ramp and the associated gates will be unusable if these structures aren’t knocked down.”

It would be recalled that the Chairman, Senate Committee on Aviation, Senator Smart Adeyemi, had directed the Managing Director of FAAN, Capt. Hamisu Yadudu, to submit the cost of demolition and compensation due to the owners of the hangars to the joint committees for consideration before going ahead with the plan.

He regretted that the obstruction was not considered during the initial construction of the new terminal, saying investors must not suffer for no fault of theirs.

“We are the representatives of the people and we must be sure that the resources of the country are not unduly wasted. We must weigh the options and if the amount to be paid out as compensation does not make sound economic judgment, we will not allow it,” Adeyemi said.

However, FAAN confirmed that it issued a relocation notice to the agencies with offices close to the airside but that there was no timeline for the agencies and companies to relocate.

The General Manager, Corporate Communications, FAAN, Mrs Henrietta Yakubu, however told our correspondent that the affected agencies would be relocated and assigned other places before the demolition would be carried out.

“FAAN is relocating those offices that have been asked to move. There is no timeframe on their relocation since we are the agency relocating them. They have just been put on notice,” she said.

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