By Nicholas Obisike
Minister of Aviation, Sen. Hadi Sirika says the Federal Government will prosecute perpetrators of the destroyed Akanu Ibiam International Airport Enugu, concrete perimeter fence.
The minister also said the federal government would deploy all lawful means to protect national assets within the 36 states of the federation and Abuja.
Sirika made this known to newsmen during the inspection of the Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu on Thursday.
He said that the federal government must apply all lawful means to prosecute Mr. John Emejulu, who was allegedly responsible for the destruction of the concrete perimeter fence at the Airport.
”The fence covered about 2km, being erected at the Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu, as part of the ongoing rehabilitation of the airport,” he said.
The minister expressed sadness that the perpetrator could take such an unlawful act by destroying a national security asset at a time the federal government was in the course of delivering the Enugu airport on August 30, as promised.
The minister, who described the action as ‘unfortunate, unbecoming and unacceptable’, said that the perpetrator would be seriously dealt with by the government.
Sirika reiterated the commitment of the federal government to the reopening of the Enugu Airport on August 30, as earlier promised.
He said that the Chief of Air Staff, the Inspector General of Police, Director General of Department of Security Service (DSS) and others would be directed to do the needful and bring him to book.
”I am sure that we are equal to the task of rising to the defence of our national asset,” the minister maintained.
Sirika appreciated President Buhari for allowing the procurement to continue work at the Airport by providing the money.
He also lauded the South East Governors especially Gov. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, whom he said, helped a lot in the procurement and had responded to all their requests for the actualisation of the laudable project.
It would be recalled that an Enugu High Court had in 2017 given a judgement in favour of Emejulu pertaining to the expanse of land in Airport Road Layout, Phase IV and V.
However, previous attempts to execute the court order failed due to alleged interference of highly placed politicians in the state.
Emejulu, in suit no.E/165M/2020, returned to the court through an application by motion on notice for the court to compel the Commissioner of Police, Enugu State and the Inspector General of Police to execute the court judgment.
On June 3, 2020, Justice J.L.C. Okibe granted an order of mandamus compelling the police to enforce the judgement and prosecute anyone that hindered the duly executed judgement.
Emejulu, in the early hours of Wednesday, stormed the location with earthmoving equipment to take possession of the landed property during which some property including those erected for the airport were destroyed.
Meanwhile, the Commandant, Air Force Ground Training Command, Mr V.O. Obiabaka who stormed the location with four of his officers sued for peace after sighting the court order mandating the police to take over the property.
Present at the Airport inspection were, Managing Director of the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) Capt. Hamisu Yadudu, Member representing Enugu East/Isi-Uzo Federal Constituency, Mr. Cornelius Nnaji.
Other included, the Chairman South East Governors’ Forum Airport Rehabilitation/Palliative Works Committee, Mr. Chris Okoye, the Enugu State Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Mr. Greg Nnaji, Commissioner for Information, Mr. Chidi Aroh, and the Chairman, Enugu Capital Territory Development Authority, Dr Joseph Onoh among others.