Port Harcourt International Airport closes to domestic flights

Kunle Akinbode, Assistant General Manager Operations, Port Harcourt International Airport, Rivers State has confirmed that all domestic flights operating at the airport have been rescheduled following a planed shut down by the management.
Akinbode made the confirmation in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Thursday in Port Harcourt.
He said Arik Air, Aero Contractors and Air Peace airlines would be shutting down operations on Thursday (today), adding that Dana Airline did close flight operations on Wednesday.
Akinbode also said Governor Nyesom Wike in a broadcast on Wednesday said he would not allow passengers on arrival into the state.
“With this development all the airlines are already shutting down in compliance,” he said.
He also said the airport was a critical facility that could not be completely closed down because there could be very essential cargos that might come in through the airport.
He said: “For instance, it’s in the news that a Japanese company has donated some medical supplies to help tackle the COVID-19 pandemic.
“These supplies have already arrived the Abuja Airport, so if there are signals to deliver the supplies across states through the airports, then such essential cargos would be allowed to land.
“All airports in the country are open to receiving essential cargos especially transporting medical supplies or other essentials.
“The position of the Federal Government is that the airports would be shutting down to passengers.
“For the Port Harcourt International Airport, most of the airlines have already adjusted their flight schedules to end at about 14:00 hours today (Thursday) and this was done even before the Rivers State Government issued its ultimatum on boarder closure.”
Akinbode, however, said though the Airport shall remain closed to passenger flights, some skeletal operations, especially at the Airport’s control tower, would remain unhindered.
He said: “It is not possible to lock down the control tower of an Airport, so the tower will remain active and our controllers will be on ground to provide necessary surveillance and signal information as no air craft is permitted to fly in isolation.”