The Federal Government has approved N13 billion for the automation of security equipment at Lagos Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Kano Aminu Kano International Airport, Abuja Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, and Port Harcourt International Airport.
The project will help the airports to switch from their current analog operation to a fully digital operation.
This disclosure was made at a press briefing by Aviation Minister Hadi Sirika to correspondents in the State House following the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting on Wednesday.
Sirika said the approval follows the presentation of a memorandum from the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) on the modernization and renovation of equipment in airport control towers.
He was optimistic that the projects for a safe control tower, once completed, would increase efficiency and reduce the workload of air traffic controllers at the airports concerned. He also said that this development would improve the rapid and automatic display on the control tower platform of data collected on the runway on weather, wind, rain, macro reserves, etc.
Sirika said: “Today the Civil Aviation Authority submitted a memorandum to the Council which was approved. The memorandum aims to modernize and renew the tower’s safety equipment at four airports, Lagos, Kano, Abuja, and Port Harcourt. It is simply a matter of increasing the efficiency of the airports, reducing the workload in the control tower, and automating the system, which has hitherto been analog to a digital one.
“A brief example: all the data we collect at the end of runways at airports is now immediately displayed on our platform in the control tower. Information about the weather, all-weather components, wind, rain, macro eruptions, etc. are displayed automatically.
“The hourly weather distribution will change to provide you with the current weather, which will improve pilot efficiency, reduce the air traffic controller’s workload, and allow him to handle more flights at the airport. The total amount of the contract is N13.122, 230, 999.17
In addition, the Minister of Aviation stated that the payment of the contract amount will be made in 2 parts.
He stated: “The first part, which is a foreign component, amounts to EUR 28 489 565 million, while the Naira component is N 3 491 504 488.31. There will of course be an additional VAT of 7.5%. This will apply for the 12-month closing period”.