Foreign airlines regretting not using Kaduna airport – FG

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Okechukwu Nnodim, Abuja

Foreign airlines that refused to use the Kaduna International Airport as an alternative to the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, are currently regretting their decisions, the Federal Government has said.

The only foreign carrier that had agreed to operate into the Kaduna airport, Ethiopian Airline, flew in from Addis Ababa on Wednesday, as well as a domestic flight operated by Azman Air from Lagos.

The Minister of State for Aviation, Senator Hadi Sirika, who welcomed local and international passengers to the airport, said the closure of the NAIA had revealed the airline operators who were true friends of Nigeria.

He expressed confidence that other foreign airlines would eventually come to Kaduna in order to reduce their losses.

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Sirika said, “They will come. For sure, whoever is not in Kaduna at the moment, I’m sure you cannot count his losses. So, I believe that British Airways, Lufthansa Air France etc. are probably regretting now, and I pray that they will respond and start landing in Kaduna.

“This is because Nigeria is identifying its friends in times of need.”

The minister stated that the Kaduna airport was chosen as an alternative to Abuja due to the failed runway at the NAIA, but reiterated that the capital city’s airport would be fixed within the stipulated six-week period.

Sirika said, “But I’m happy because we thought proactively and there was an alternative. There are quite a few doubting Thomas on whether Kaduna can work. Kaduna is working and we have a Dreamliner from Ethiopian Airline; and for that, we thank the airline for believing in us, for partnering Nigeria when the country is in a time of need.”

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