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Ministry takes measure to curb theft of manhole covers on highways, bridges

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The Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing says it has taken measures to stop the theft of steel manhole covers along highways and bridges in Lagos.

The Federal Controller of Works, Lagos, Mr Godwin Eke, who disclosed this to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Friday said it would now add the use of composite materials.

“The manhole covers, I don’t know the attraction to people that remove them illegally.

“So the ministry decided to replace them with plastic covers and the thing was awarded to JB (Julius Berger).

“On the benefit of hindsight, the ministry now said we are not sure they would not remove the Plastic covers. In order to guard against that, we changed the plastic covers to steel/concrete.

“Meaning that we are going replace them with composite materials in the sense that the steel would be the manhole cover while the concrete would be a counter weight to pull it down.

“And it would be as heavy as anything that for you to remove it, you must deploy a crane, to hire a crane to come and remove just one cover or two covers would not pay.

“So we have changed the design and it is just being finalised so that Julius Berger can go and do the needful.

“It is the same contract, we are only modifying it, we have finished with the design, the steel lids, they also have to be fabricated, and as soon as those ones are in place, they would mobilize and fix it’’.

Eke added that cranes would be used to remove the covers whenever there was need to clean the manholes.

NAN reports that contract to replace stolen manhole covers was awarded to Julius Berger in 2017, however, the project design was later modified to use of composite materials.

Manholes whose covers have been stolen are usually located on major highways and bridges in Lagos.


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