Ike Nnachi, Abakaliki
All is now set for the Ebonyi State International Cargo Airport to commence its maiden test flight operations in a few days time.
Site Manager of the project, Engr. Frank Ngwu, said that the Airport was ready for continuous flight operations.
Ngwu, Special Assistant to Governor David Umahi on Infrastructural Development, noted that the airport has the largest terminal in the country.
“We are ready for the test flight, as you can see, we are here at the runway, and you can see the level of the marking of the runway. We can say that 95 percent of the runway has been marked and it will be concluded in the next 3 days.”
“The level of infrastructure that has been put in this place, you will be amazed at the level of modern equipment here, they are all made in Europe and the best and latest equipment in the aviation industry.
“You can see also that the terminal building that we have here is the single largest terminal building in Nigeria, our apron is also the single biggest apron in Nigeria, 133 thousand square meters.
“The International wing is 60, 000 square meters, the domestic wing apron is 60,000 square meters.”
He stated that everything has been put in place like the Emergency Operation Center (EOC), the police post, and Immigration office.
“Other buildings within the airport like substations, halls, the switch rooms they are all completed. The meteorology equipment both those within and outside the airport have been installed,” he said.
Mr.Ngwu commended Governor David Umahi for the vision of the project which he noted has been constructed to be the best, and biggest in Africa and sub-Saharan Africa.
“Governor David Umahi has a big heart; his quest for speedy development of his state and people as demonstrated here and around us is unprecedented.”
Mr Nwgu noted that the runway is the thickest in the country at 65cm concrete pavement meaning that the biggest cargo aircraft in the world can land on it.
“There are a lot of things that are to be justified above others in Ebonyi International Cargo Airport such as; our runway is the only rigid concrete runway in Nigeria, the thickness is 65cm.
“What it means is that even the biggest cargo aircraft can land here, there is this biggest cargo aircraft that has only landed in Nigeria once and it was banned from landing in Nigeria because it destroys the runways in the country which are on flexible pavement.
“With what we have here in terms of the size, and strength of our runway we can receive the biggest aircraft in the world.”
Ngwu said that with such big aircraft landing at the Ebonyi Airport, “it will make the price of goods to be cheaper because what five or six aircraft can carry it carries it at once utilising the same amount of aviation fuel.
“We have a lot to show to the world when we start,” he added.