• Sunday, May 19, 2024
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Airport takeover: Tinubu seeks Senate approval for N24.6bn refund

Still on the importance of the Office of the Chief Economic Adviser to the President

President Bola Tinubu has requested the Senate’s approval for a refund of over N15.1 billion to the Kebbi State Government for the construction of Sir Ahmadu Bello International Airport, Birnin Kebbi, as well as a refund of N9.5 billion for the Nasarawa State Government for the construction of Lafia Cargo Airport, Nasarawa, totaling N24.6 billion.

Tinubu’s request was presented in a letter read by Senate President Godswill Akpabio during the plenary on Tuesday.

In the letter, Tinubu explained that the federal government had taken over the control and ownership of the two airports, which necessitated a refund to the state governments.

He stated that aviation, including airports, the safety of aircraft, and the carriage of passengers and goods by air, are owned and managed by the Federal government as per the second schedule of the 1999 constitution, as amended.

Tinubu also mentioned that aviation is listed under the exclusive legislative list, giving the federal government sole authority over ownership.

Furthermore, Tinubu noted that the Federal Executive Council (FEC) had approved the reimbursement of the funds at its meeting last May through the issuance of promissory notes.

The letter reads: “Establishment of promissory notes program in favor of Kebbi and Nasarawa State governments for the reimbursement of the respective cost of construction of newly built airports in those states which have been taken over by the federal government.

“The Senate is invited to note that at the Executive Council meeting of the Federal Executive Council (FEC) held on the 23rd day of May 2023, the following approvals were made:

A promissory note in the sum of N9.5 billion only to be issued to Nasarawa State government as a refund for the takeover of the newly constructed Nasarawa Airport.

A promissory note in the sum of N15.1 billion only to be issued to the Kebbi state government as a refund for the takeover of Birnin Kebbi International Airport.

“The Senate may wish to note that aviation, including airports, safety of aircraft and carriage of passengers and goods by air, fall under the exclusive legislative list as prescribed in paragraph two above”, the letter read.