What happens when the airport goes black? Perharps you were rushing to catch up with your flight and suddenly everywhere goes dark? That is the story of the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos. The outages, which occurred between 9:15pm and 9:42pm, lasted an average of two minutes each as officers of the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) made jest about the state of power at the airport.
The outages led to complaints from Nigerians and foreigners alike who were travelling out of the country.
A woman on a trip to London, said: “Naija, when this country go change“.
Another man jested alongside, pointing to Nigerians on an immigration queue and saying: “See your country?”
The duo were interjected by the immigration officer, who said: “Madam, watch what you say, else we would make you go through what we go through everyday”.
Power outages at the airport look to have become a regular occurrence, with British Airways procuring a rechargeable lamp to keep skeletal services going at moments like this.
The airport had recorded at least two blackouts in the past month, with stakeholders complaining and calling for an emergency in the aviation sector.
The National Association of Nigeria Travel Agencies (NANTA) had also joined in on calls to the Muhammadu Buhari administration to declare an emergency in the aviation sector.
“We recall that the incident on Monday, September 12, 2016 was the second of such occurrences in the past one week and urge the Federal Government of Nigeria to immediately put an end to this recurring national embarrassment,” NANTA had said.
“Apart from the issue of incessant power failure experienced in airports across the country, there is the parlous state of our tarmacs as well as the inefficient personnel manning some of the posts at the airports.”