The Turkish Government has agreed to partner Osun state in Nigeria towards the completion of Moshood Kashimawo Olawale Abiola (MKO) International Airport, Ido-Osun.
When completed, aside serving as a cargo airport for import and export activities, it will also serve as hangar where repairs and maintenance of aircrafts are carried out – the service obtainable only in three countries in Africa namely, South Africa, Ethiopia and Egypt,
Turkish Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Hakan Cakil, made the commitment during a courtesy visit to Gov. Rauf Aregbesola at the Osun Governor’s lodge in Abuja, the Nigerian capital.
Cakil said efforts had reached the climax to support the state to complete the Airport, a development that will open windows for better relations between Nigeria and Turkey.
He voiced the readiness of Turkish Government to partner Osun State on trade, commerce and industrial revolution to improve on the socio-economic well being of its people.
“I commend the state for coming up with the idea of having a unique international airport. if completed, the airport will be a model in Nigeria and by extension, Africa.
“Let me assure you that the partnering company, Biray Construction company has the backing of the Turkish Government to deliver a quality job at the end of it all.
“I also assure you that the execution of the airport will not only foster good relationship between the Osun State and Turkey, but will also provide ample business opportunities between the partnering governments.” the ambassador said.
Responding, Aregbesola pledged that his administration would muster the political will needed to complete the project since the government intends to use the International Airport to open the state to economic development.
“No efforts will be spared to turn around the economy of the state for the betterment of all and sundry.
“Our administration has done much to bring a facelift to the state, particularly in infrastructure development, a move which, has turned Osogbo, the state capital, into a mega city,” Aregbesola said.
Also speaking, the Chairman of the partnering company, Biray Construction Company, Birol Arikan assured the State Government of quality service delivery.
”We are well known to this project; this is what we do most. We have been on ground for long.
“We have been operating since 2002. We have handled such projects across the country.
“So, when we begin, all efforts will be made to make MKO Abiola International Airport truly of international standard,” he stressed.
The facilitator of the partnership, Amb. Nurudeen Ogunlade, announced that his firm, All Works of life Development Organisation, had completed all it entails, including obtaining the first tranche of funds through the EXIM Bank of Turkey to begin the construction, upon the signing of concessional agreement between the State of Osun and Biray Construction Group.
He noted that the state has demonstrated high sense of commitment to transform the dream into reality, stressing that efforts are on the top gear to ensure finances of the project are appropriately and timely secured.
By Yinka Salaam, Osogbo