FG to spend N412.64b on 524 roads, bridges nationwide
Ihedioha urges review of policy on tolls
Minister of Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, has updated the Federal Executive Council (FEC) on the construction of 524 roads and bridges nationwide, saying 80 are priority projects scheduled for completion in the 2020-2021 fiscal year.
In a presentation before the Council yesterday, Fashola said N412.64 billion would be needed for the projects, listing those on priority to include 27 financed with Sovereign Sukuk Fund and 47 scheduled for completion in 2020/2021.
The minister explained that additional N255.6 billion would be needed to complete the projects in record time, adding that N157.05 billion had been appropriated in the 2020 budget.
The four bridges under the priority projects are Ibi Bridge, Chanchangi Bridge in Taraba State, Ikom Bridge in Cross River State and rehabilitation of Third Mainland Bridge in Lagos.
The brief also provided a detailed record of ongoing road and bridge projects in the 36 states shows of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory.
Meanwhile, Imo State Governor Emeka Ihedioha has urged the Federal Government to review its plan to toll roads across the federation.
The governor stated this yesterday while reacting to traffic congestions on federal roads, especially the Lagos/Ibadan expressway, during a forum organised by BusinessDay Newspaper in Lagos.
He said his administration had awarded contracts for the revitalisation of some federal roads in Imo, in a move to make life more comfortable for residents, despite the costly nature of such venture the ailing economy he inherited.
He said, “The Federal Government should appreciate that Nigerians ply these roads.
“We have similar traffic on Owerri/Onitsha road, the same on Owerri/Aba. I have not seen the Federal Government’s presence on the Owerri/Onitsha road, Owerri/Okigwe road, Owerri/Aba road and others. Five federal roads have been awarded by the state government.
“The only airport functioning in the South East is the one in Owerri that also constitutes major traffic in the state. We have the fifth highest Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in the country in Imo State and we want to make Imo a more friendly state.”
In his remarks at the occasion, Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, who was represented by his senior special assistant on media, restated that the Federal Government remained committed to providing enabling environment for the private sector to thrive.