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Saudi plane: So that’s why you were in a hurry

According to Nigerian aviation authorities [aka Oduah boys] they notified all planes worldwide that a part of the Abuja airport’s runway was closed for repairs…

According to Nigerian aviation authorities [aka Oduah boys] they notified all planes worldwide that a part of the Abuja airport’s runway was closed for repairs so they must make use of a shorter runway. Everyone else complied, except this Saudi pilot. He was obviously thinking of his country’s black gold-plated King Abdul Aziz Airport when he lumbered hard unto our own runway and continued going like a camel in an open desert. He reached the end of the available runway and continued going, straight into the runway section that was undergoing repair and slammed into equipment placed there by the contractor. It took 17 hours before we could drag this behemoth plane away and reopen our capital city’s only airport.
What has been agitating my mind all this while was what was this plane carrying and why was it in such a hurry that it could not stop even when it saw earth-moving equipment on the runway? There must be something because soldiers quickly surrounded the crippled plane and refused to allow any snooping reporter to get near it. Now we have got the answer, courtesy of the Saudi Arabian Embassy in Nigeria’s thin skin for criticism.
The Embassy took serious exception to a Daily Trust account of the incident that claimed that the Saudi plane was carrying weapons. It therefore wrote a letter to the editor saying the plane was not carrying any “dangerous or prohibited” goods. So what was it carrying? The Saudis may not have a Freedom of Information Act in their own country but as custodians of the Two Holy Mosques, they don’t like lying. So they said the plane was carrying five bullet proof cars imported from South Africa by the Defence Industries Corporation [DIC], Kaduna.
What? Despite what Mrs Stella Oduah went through, some other Nigerian big shot still thought of buying bullet proof cars, three more than Oduah actually bought? DIC, are you not ashamed that you have to import common bullet proof cars when you should be manufacturing tanks of your own by now?
Since 1964 when far-sighted old Prime Minister Abubakar Tafawa Balewa set you up, what have you been doing that you must import a car from South Africa air-freighted by a Saudi plane? If you had been serious all these years, shouldn’t you have manufactured a tank of your own by now, which the South Africans could come and buy and the Saudis can air freight it for them to Johannesburg?
Now see what your inefficiency has done. You have damaged our airport. You have damaged the contractor’s machines. You have damaged a Saudi plane. You have created confusion for the Federal Government since people have heard that it is buying bullet proof cars left, right and centre. People will reach their own conclusions, one of which is that top officials have decided that the 2015 election will be so bloody that they need armoured cars to move around. All this damage occurred because of DIC’s inefficiency. If you had made these cars yourselves instead of buying them from abroad and flying them post haste into Nigeria, would any of these have happened?
The Saudi Embassy has shown that you do not need several commissions of inquiry to unravel the truth behind a scandal. All you need is a thin skin for criticism; all it takes is a letter to the editor. Thank you very much, Saudis. However, please tell that your pilot that when next he is coming to our airport, he should slow down on approach. Even if there are no construction machines forgotten by a contractor, they could be cows resting on the runway.

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