In a remarkable display of community solidarity, the Jiwa community has officially handed over a significant portion of their land to the Federal Government (FG) for the construction of the much anticipated second runway at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, in Abuja.
Vanguard reports that the proposed second runway aims to address the growing air traffic demands at the Abuja airport, effectively enhancing the efficiency and capacity of the airport.
Also, the existing runway has faced capacity challenges due to increased air traffic, leading to flight delays and congestion. However, the second runway is expected to alleviate these issues and further position Abuja as a key regional air travel hub.
The handover ceremony which was held on Thursday in Abuja, was attended by top government officials, the Chairman of the aviation committees in the National Assembly, aviation stakeholders, and representatives of the host community.
Speaking, the Emir of Jiwa community, Alhaji Idris Musa, while recognizing the transformative impact of the anticipated project and its surrounding communities, called on FG and the China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation, CCECC, to ensure the involvement of community members, which him, not only provide job opportunities but also empower local residents and foster ownership of the development within the Jiwa community.
Calling on the community youths not to revolt against the project, the Emir said: “My farm was affected and many of you know that my farm is very big, and I know how much I collected it. I want to use this medium to say sorry for what happened to you. I’m pleading with you to be a little patient.
“I want to appeal to the House of Assembly to look at the prices of the compensation that is paid in FCT; it is so meager. Without you changing the way it’s supposed to be paid, many people will die. The money given to us cannot even train our children, cannot even make us feed them. Most of us, have 30 children and he has about 1 million, how much are they going to share? Some of them pay N200, some N10, 000. No farm, no money.
“The House of Assembly, you have to change and quickly review these things for us. I want to thank the minister for his cooperation.
“For the CCECC, when you’re starting this work, our people should be the first priority of any employment you want to give people because some of them despite the fact that they don’t have the cadre, some of them are not engineers but the actual work that you are doing should not go anywhere it should come to us. If you don’t do that, don’t say they are protesting to you”, he said.