The contractor handling the MKO Abiola International Airport in Ido-Osun, Osun State, on Thursday said the first phase of the N69bn project would be ready within eight months.
The Chief Executive Officer of AWOL Group of Companies in charge of the airport project, Mr. Nurudeen Ogunlade, disclosed this at a news conference in Osogbo on Thursday.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Osun Government, on October 26, signed a concession agreement with AWOL for the construction of the airport.
“The concession agreement will be on “Build-Operate-Transfer” basis and to last for 30 years.’’
The contract was first awarded on October 14, 2012, at the cost of N4.5bn and was to be completed within eight months. It was later reviewed to N11bn.
Ogunlade said with the construction of the airport, the economy and tourism potential of the state would be fully realised.
“The state’s tourism potential will not be fully realised without an international airport. And tourism is likely to be our foreign exchange earner for a long time to come.’’
Ogunlade said the airport project would provide about 10,000 jobs for youths during the construction period and 2,000 jobs after its completion.
He said there would be a cargo and maintenance section as part of the airport structural design, which would be one of its kind in the country and the West African sub-region.
“With the increasing alarm in food shortage in the country, the MKO Abiola International Airport will double up with manufacturing products and food bank warehouse cargo sector.’’
Ogunlade said the airport project was increased from N11bn to N69bn under the concession agreement due to its expansion and other modern facilities that were included.
He, however, said the airport, which would be built on 839 hectares of land, would be funded 100 percent by the company.
On his part, the State Commissioner for works, Mr. Kazeem Salami, said the airport would bring development to the state after its completion.