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Stories by Abel Orukpe, Correspondent, Lagos
The Managing Director of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN), Mr. George Uriesi, has said that the agency may increase the number of teams currently dismantling dead and abandoned aircraft at various airports in the country.
Speaking on the latest dismantling of abandoned airplanes in media programme monitored in Lagos, the FAAN boss noted that the Murtala Muhammed Airport(MMA),Lagos and the Benin Airport have the highest number of such abandoned and dead airplanes in the country, compared to those in other airports across the country.
He blamed the high number of abandoned airplanes at the Lagos airport, for example, on the fact that it served as the base of most airlines that were abandoned there, while that of Benin, he said was due to the fact that Okada Air, one of the nation’s major operators at one time, has Benin as its operational base.
Most of the abandoned and moribund airplanes at Benin airport are the banned BAC 1-11.
According to him, “most abandoned aircraft are in Lagos and Benin airports, while we have one or two in other airports across the country”
He also disclosed that the team presently dismantling the airplanes has successfully completed three, adding that FAAN may increase the team working on the airplanes to make the job faster.
On the time frame for dismantling the dead airplanes, Uriesi, said that it has no time frame, because some airplanes are bigger than others to dismantle.
He added that when FAAN issued ultimatums to owners of the dead airplanes to move them from the airport, many did not take the agency serious, but that when the team started working on the aircraft, some of them started coming out.
The agency hinged the removal order on the fact that they are a menace, and besides posing security threat to the airport.