By Emma Amaize, Austin Ogwuda, Emma Arubi, Festus Ahon & Godwin Oghre
ASABA—DELTA State Governor, Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, yesterday, spoke on the investigation of Asaba International Airport by Economic and Financial Crimes Commission, EFCC, insisting that he was prudent in the airport construction, which had a contract value of N27.7 billion. He said it was the cheapest airport constructed anywhere in the country.
The governor spoke at an interactive session at Government House, Asaba.
He said: “Some people wrote a petition against the airport. I think they are from Delta and the petition was to EFCC. The Special Project Director had gone to explain the issue of the hill at the airport. Let me put it in proper perspective. The contract value is N27.7 billion. I know some of you are quoting N54 billion. It is the cheapest airport built by any state government in the country. I challenge anybody to contradict me.
“ On the issue of the hill, the cost of work on the hill was part of the original contract from day one. It was not a new contract. When Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority came they said that without pulling down the hill, they would not approve the place for bigger planes.
“Apart from the hill, there were other things they talked about. So we looked at the whole thing, realising that the contractor was very slow in pulling down the hill, and we wanted bigger planes to land at the airport.
“In order to fast track the issue of flattening the hill so that NCAA can grant approval for bigger planes, we invited three other contractors to join the original contractor. That was exactly what happened and we had explained same to EFCC.”