Members of the Senate have pleaded with relevant authorities to upgrade the status of Ibadan airport to an international airport with state-of-the-art facilities.
The Details: This development is consequent upon a motion by Senator Kola Balogun and co-sponsored by 37 other lawmakers across political parties and geopolitical zones of the country during plenary, according to Punch.
Why this matters: Balogun was of the opinion that upgrading the local airport to an international airport could attract economic development to Oyo State and complement the activities of the Ibadan inland dry port.
Balogun’s words: “The potential of Ibadan to attract economic development both locally and internationally due to the presence of institutions such as the University of Ibadan, University College Hospital, International Okerete Market, Bola Ige International Business Complex, will be boosted with the airport upgrade.”
Apart from the goldmine inherent in the airport’s conversion, Balogun believes the Ibadan airport has enough land to be an international airport.
“The total land area acquired for the Ibadan airport is about 557.1 hectares currently, hence when fully utilised, it can conveniently accommodate a standard international airport,” he said.
Senator Francis Fadahunsi, who supported the motion, pointed the Senate’s attention to the city’s population of six million people, who lack international access to the world.
“Ibadan, with a population of about six million people and the status of headquarters of the South-West region, is supposed to have an international airport. It is the only major city among the geopolitical zones that lacks an international airport,” he argued.
The Senate Committee on Aviation was tasked by Senate President, Ahmad Lawan to investigate the issues raised and report to the upper chamber in two months.
About Ibadan Airport: Situated in Ibadan, one of the oldest cities in Nigeria, Ibadan Airport has been a feature of the Oyo State since it was commissioned in 1982 by Joseph Wayas, the former Senate President. The airport is a hub for domestic arrivals and domestic departures to other cities in the country.