May 30, 2023

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Senator Hadi Abubakar Sirika, receiving the Nigerian Institute of Architects, NIA, “Distinguished Service Award” 2021, from its national President, Arc Sonny Echono.

The Nigerian Institute of Architects, NIA, has pried into the activities in the nation’s aviation industry and was excited by the progress recorded in the industry’s growth hence, bestowed an Honorary Fellowship and Distinguished Service Award of the NIA to the Minister of Aviation, Senator Hadi Abubakar Sirika.

In the citation at the institute’s annual award for 2021, the NIA said the Honorary Fellowship and Distinguished Service Award of the Nigerian Institute of Architects was given to the minister “for the unprecedented infrastructural developments within the aviation sector under his leadership”.

According to the Institute, under the minister’s supervision, the Ministry of Aviation embarked upon 157 projects and delivered 134 amongst them to 100% completion. The NIA also noted that attainment was the first time in the history of Nigerian Aviation.

Among the projects Nigerian architects were excited about and which to them made the minister’s rating soared were the completion of the four international terminals now slated for concession namely, the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, NAIA, Abuja, Murtala Mohammed International Airport, MMIA, Ikeja, Lagos, Port Harcourt International Airport, Port Harcourt, and the Malam Aminu Kano Airport, MAKIA, Kano. All the airports the NIA described as architectural masterpieces.

Senator Hadi A. Sirika, making his acceptance speech at the NIA annual awards for 2021

The Institute also said the rehabilitation of the runways of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja and the Akanu Ibiam International Airport, Enugu were projects of the minister which were delivered in conformity to the International Civil Aviation Organization’s, ICAO, specifications and were not only delivered ahead of schedule, but within budget.

The citation further enthused, “airports under his watch were certified (Abuja and Lagos). It is also on record that Aviation has become the fastest-growing sector in the Nigerian economy. Pre Covid-19 passenger figures grew from 8 million to 18 million and similarly all allied businesses have grown tremendously” the citation stated.

Receiving the award, Senator Hadi Sirika, also a Fellow of the Royal Aeronautical Society, expressed his appreciation to the Institute for recognizing his modest achievements in the aviation sector, even though he was not an architect by profession.

He said he had been invited to receive numerous awards, honours, fellowships and even honourary doctorate degrees numbering about 390 but he declined all the offers.

According to him, he had to make an exception for the Nigerian Institute of Architects award because of the integrity of the institution.

“I am more than glad to accept this. I cherish it. I will keep it. I will nurse it and I will carry it to one of my sons or daughters who will be an architect”, Sirika said.

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