The closure of the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport in Abuja scheduled for February has now been shifted to March 8.
The move will enable the government repair its runway, the aviation ministry said on Tuesday, pushing the move back later than previously scheduled.
The decision to shut the airport and divert Abuja-bound flights to Kaduna, an airport used primarily for domestic flights about 160 km (100 miles) to the north, was taken after airlines threatened to stop flying to the capital.
The federal government had initially said the six week closure would begin in February but shifted the date without given any reasons.
The Minister of State for Aviation, Hadi Sirika, in a statement who announced the new date said there will be thorough discussions with stakeholders in the industry on Thursday.
The meeting is to brief them on efforts being made to ensure that the use of Kaduna’s airport is “seamless and hitch-free” said aviation ministry spokesman James Odaudu.
Analysts have said that the temporary closure of Abuja airport, the country’s second busiest after the commercial capital Lagos, will have a negative impact on Africa’s biggest economy, which fell into recession in 2016 for the first time in 25 years.
German company, Julius Berger will carry out repairs on airport’s damaged runway.