Nigerian govt approves N3.1bn airport landing systems, N272m assault rifles

Nigerian govt approves N3.1bn airport landing systems, N272m assault rifles
November 14 22:44 2018

By Nasir Kura

The Federal Executive Council (FEC) on Wednesday approved N3.1 billion for the procurement and installation of Instrument Landing Systems for Abuja, Kaduna, Benin, Ibadan and Enugu airports.

This was disclosed by the Minister of State for Aviation, Mr. Hadi Sirika, while briefing State House correspondents at the end of the weekly FEC meeting in Abuja.

The minister said the landing systems would guide pilots and planes to the central line of the runway and to the threshold.

“This contract which was initially awarded at a cost of N1,590,361,027.20 was revalued to N3,149,740,995.42 by the Federal Executive Council. The contract was awarded in 2011 but due to exchange rate, we had to bring it back to Council, it suffered lack of budgetary allocations. So we came back to Council to have it re-denominated.

“It was awarded at a time the Naira was N154 to a dollar but now is N305. So Council has approved and the user department is Nigeria Airspace Management Agency (NAMA). This is a very important instrument for us, to be able to operate in poor weather conditions and to be able to take the planes down to the central lines of the runway for safe pilotage. So this is a safety concern and gladly it has been approved,” he said.

Also speaking, Minister of Interior, Mr. Abdurahman Dambazzau, said the council also approved N272.4 million for the procurement of 400 pieces of Beretta assault rifles with 20,000 rounds of ammunition for the Nigerian Prisons Service (NPS) in order to prevent jailbreaks and ensure maximum security in prisons across the country.

“Council approved a memo for the procurement of arms and ammunition for the armed guards of the prisons. As you know there is need to secure all our prisons particularly where we have inmates that require maximum security.

“If you recalled not too long a go our prison in Minna was attacked from the outside and freed some of the dangerous prisoners. So, the prison has an armed squad. We realize after investigation of that attack that one of the major shortcomings within that prison was lack of adequate arms and ammunition.

“We are procuring 400 pieces of Beretta assault rifles with 20,000 rounds. These rounds are peculiar to those weapons at the cost of N272,489,280 with period of delivery of 120 days,” he said.