The Inspector General of Police, Ibrahim Idris, has assured passengers of security ahead of the diversion of flights from Wednesday from the Nnamdi Azikwe Airport, Abuja to the Kaduna International Airport.The diversion, scheduled to last until April 9, is to enable repair of the runway of the Abuja airport.
Mr. Idris gave this assurance on Sunday while on an inspection tour of the Kaduna International Airport ahead of the flights transfer schedule.
There is heavy security presence along the Abuja/Kaduna road, Nnamdi Azikwe Way, Mando road up to the Kaduna International airport.
Our reporter also noticed continued installation of solar-powered street lights along Nnamdi Azikwe way and roads leading to the airport.
The police chief said the police have deployed sniffer dogs, helicopters and equipment required for security surveillance.
He however, declined to give the number of officers deployed to Kaduna.
“As you can see, we are ready. What I want to say is we have deployed men and the equipment required to perform their work.
“We provided vehicles and helicopters for surveillance, we mobilized men for different units of the force counterterrorism and anti-bomb squad to man security points within and outside the airport,” the police boss said.
“We have also deployed sniffer dogs in all the nooks and crannies of the airport.”
On movement of passengers from Kaduna to Abuja, Mr. Idris said, “We have effective patrol.”
“We are covering all the highways from Kaduna to Abuja road linking to the town.”
He said the police would provide security on all buses to be provided by government and charter vehicles.
“We will equally be at the railway station to see every coach for effective security throughout the period of the operations.
“We have tasked the helicopters to mount security surveillance 24 hours”.
On synergy with the airport authority, he said it was commendable, adding,
that there was a command operation centre in the airport.
“All the security operatives involved in this operation have representatives in the centre. It is through the centre that we will have maximum synergy and give directives.”
He assured foreigners of safety of their lives and property.
Acting President Yemi Osinbajo had said work on the Kaduna International Airport may not be complete before Wednesday.
The plans for Kaduna to handle Abuja flights had been met with skepticism. The airport handled just 12 flights in December 2015, the last month for which Nigeria’s airports authority has figures, compared with 812 that used Abuja.
Speaking after the inspection tour of the airport in company of Governor Nasir El-Rufai and his deputy, Bala Bantex, on Friday in Kaduna, the acting president added however that the federal government expected that within a very short period of time, the airport would be in a very usable and comfortable state.
“It is going to be completed over this weekend, like the ceiling, air conditioning and all that security facilities,” he said.
“Honestly, the work has made considerable progress but there is quite a bit to do,” he added.
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