The Federal Government on Wednesday, approved contracts worth N7,499,603,500 for surveillance equipment for the Kaduna and Port Harcourt airports and an irrigation project augmentation in Adamawa State.
The Ministers of Aviation, Hadi Sirika and Water Resources, Sulieman Adamu, revealed this to State House Correspondents after the weekly virtual Federal Executive Council meeting chaired by President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
Sirika disclosed that the Council approved contracts worth N1,499,603,500 for surveillance equipment for the Kaduna and Port Harcourt airports in Kaduna and Rivers States respectively.
He said, “The approval is for the award of contracts for the design, supply and maintenance of mobile surveillance observation systems with remote controlled license and these are for the airports of Port Harcourt and Kaduna and it will continue to other airports progressively.
“We are beginning with the first two but it will continue with the remaining airports in the future and the contract sum for this particular procurement is N1,499,603,500.00 including the 7.5 per cent value added tax and it will be delivered within 30 weeks.”
He also announced that Nigeria will soon conclude a Bilateral Air Service Agreement with Canada.
The BASA, he explained, is in line with the Chicago convention, to which both countries are signatories.
He said, “The approval we got was for the signing of the Bilateral Air Service Agreement between the Federal Republic of Nigeria and the government of Canada and this is in accordance with the Chicago Convention, to which both Nigeria and Canada are signatories.
“The highlights of the Bilateral Air Service Agreement between us and Canada involve the granting of rights and privileges as well as the designation of airlines authorisation, withholding, revocation, suspension and limitation of authorisation, application of national laws and regulations.”
Sirika noted that the BASA also include: safety standards certificate and licenses, aviation security, custom duties and other charges, statistics pricing and general terms and conditions of carriage, availability of airports and aviation facilities and services, capacity, airline representatives, ground handling, sales and transfer of funds, consultations, amendments therefrom, settlement of disputes, entry into force, among others.
In his brief, the Minister of Water Resources, Sulieman Adamu, said the Council approved the augmentation of N6bn for the Chochi irrigation project in Adamawa State.
He said the project which began in 1988 has suffered several setbacks before it was finally re-awarded in 2006. However, the hindrances continued until it became impracticable to continue the project on a budget that no longer reflects the current day price of commodities and Forex.
Adamu explained, “At the time it was awarded, diesel was very cheap. But now diesel is so expensive. So, we provided a solar component to provide energy for the pumps, to irrigate the land and this is one of the reasons in addition to variation of prices, foreign exchange fluctuation that calls for a review of this project, seeking for augmentation of about N6bn and an extension of time to complete the project.
“At the same time, we felt the need for strengthening the technical, financial, managerial capacity of the company, which has dwindled over time. Contractors of the company have been there on the site for like 24 years and they’ve lost quite a lot of experts along the way. And therefore, we have now been able to reinforce the original contractor.
“Rather than terminate the contract, we feel it’s better to just continue by reinforcing the efforts of the contractor through a joint venture with another company which is a Nigerian company, Messers Hydro Source and Resources Limited.
“So it is a joint venture between Messers Impressive Bakolori and Messers Hydro Source and Resources Limited and augmentation it for N6bn to take the project to N11.026bn with additional extension period of 24 months, plus 12 months effect liability period, making a total of 36 months.”