On this day, the head of State, General Yakubu Gowon received the credentials of the new ambassadors of Lebanon and the People’s Republic of Hungary at the Dodan Barracks, Lagos. The envoys were Mr. Hussein Al-Abdallah of Lebanon and Mr. Marton Szabe of the People’s Republic of Hungary.
General Gowon expressed his appreciation for the moral support given to his government by both countries during the civil war. The Federal Government, he said, had succeeded not only in healing the wounds of the nation’s civil war but also in its efforts to rekindle the spirit of brotherhood among the people. It has also succeeded to re-discover the country’s identity as a nation.
Earlier, Mr. Al-Abdallah of Lebanon had commended General Gowon for his efforts to see that a just settlement was achieved in the Middle-East conflict. Mr. Szabe, the Hungarian envoy also expressed his appreciation for the Federal Government’s constructive role in strengthening African unity.
Also on this day, the Nigeria Airways came under severe criticism from the Federal Commissioner for Finance, Alhaji Shagari.
Alhaji Shagari expressed dissatisfaction with the treatment the Airways gave to pilgrims following the closure of Kano Airport as a result of the earlier Royal Jordanian aircraft disaster at the Airport. Alhaji Shagari, who was chairman of the committee responsible for pilgrims’ flight, told newsmen in Kano that the Nigeria Airways flew 400 pilgrims to Lagos without any arrangement for their accommodation and food. He claimed that the type of treatment was capable of stirring sentiments in the minds of the pilgrims.
Also today, the black box believed to contain vital documentary evidence on the circumstances that led o the crash of a Royal Jordanian aircraft at the Kano Airport was found. According to an aviation expert at the Kano Airport on this day, the box contained a tape recorded dialogue between the control tower and the pilot shortly before the plane crashed. Another expert said that the tape recorded dialogue would assist the investigation panel in determining whether or not the pilot acted properly in attempting to land at the airport after he had been informed of the prevailing bad weather.