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Again, outage at Lagos airport


THE Lagos airport terminal which was thrown into darkness last Sunday again experienced the same ordeal yesterday following a power outage that lasted for four hours.

The system tripped off at noon and was restored at about 4.00p.m., a few hours before check-in, a situation that would have engendered discomfort for travellers as experienced at the weekend.

However, electrical engineers worked round the clock yesterday to save the country another embarrassment.

The development may have led to a meeting of the Ministerial Committee on Aviation in Abuja yesterday to tackle infrastructure decay at the country’s airports, particularly the Lagos airport which is the nation’s busiest.

However, the Minister of Aviation, Fidelia Njeze, again apologised for the unfortunate incident which paralysed activities at the airport, leading to delays for foreign airlines, and so much discomfiture for thousands of travellers.

She remarked: “My attention was drawn to the unfortunate incident of power outage at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport terminal building in Lagos. We use this opportunity to apologise to all our passengers for the inconveniences they suffered during the outage. We assure them that adequate steps will be taken to forestall future occurrence”.

Darkness enveloped the international wing of the Murtala Muhammed Airport , Lagos , as travellers struggled under the hot condition to undergo check-ins.

For over six hours, the departure hall of the country ‘s apex airport was thrown into darkness, as people poured outside for fresh air and to avoid suffocation.

When The Guardian visited the area yesterday after a short text message from one of the passengers, the situation was really appalling as some of the travellers pulled off their shirts to allow them escape the suffocating situation.

The chillers installed since the inception of the airport in 1979 also did not function due to the problem that is fast turning the airport into an object of ridicule.

The Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) is said to be seriously handicapped due to non-remittance of money by its numerous concessionaires which owe the agency over N8 billion, a situation that made the immediate former minister of Aviation, Babatunde Omotoba to threaten a review of all the agreements which he said were not favourable to it.

The situation hindered airlines from landing or take-off, a situation that was likely to lead to flight delay by foreign airlines.

Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) Director-General Harold Demuren, drenched in his own sweat, was seen appealing to over a thousand passengers at the airport for their understanding.

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