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Government okays N29 billion for roads linking Niger Republic

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The Federal Executive Council (FEC) has approved contracts for the construction of two roads from Sokoto and Jigawa states up to Nigeria’s borders with the Niger Republic at a cost of over N29 billion.

Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola told State House correspondents yesterday after a prolonged FEC meeting which lasted over seven hours and was presided over by President Muhammadu Buhari at the State House, Abuja.

The first contract of N9.5 billion is for the 47-kilometre road from Balle Kurdella in Sokoto State to the border with the Niger Republic.

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The second is for the 50-kilometer highway from Kunya in Jigawa State to the border with the West African country. The contract, he said, would be executed by Mothercat Civil Engineering firm at a cost of N19.76 billion.

Fashola explained that the contracts were approved as part of strategies to implement the current administration’s Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP) to boost trade and economy, especially given the international commercial activities in those areas.

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Meanwhile, the two roads, the minister said, are in line with the Africa Continental Free Trade Agreement (AfCFTA) recently signed by Nigeria to promote trade among African nations.

Other approvals by FEC yesterday include the extension of contract services for Kontagora/Auna Dam and irrigation project in Niger State by three years at a cost of N734.5 million. 

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The project, according to the Minister of Water Resources, Suleiman Adamu, was started in 1987 but abandoned until when it was recently resuscitated.

Similarly, the Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika announced council’s approval of two contracts for his ministry. The first, according to him, is the refurbishment of the Abuja office of the Accident Investigation Bureau (AIB) at a cost of N591.8 million.

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The second contract is for construction and equipping the AIB’s training school, also in Abuja for N645.4 million.

Besides, the Minister of Mines and Steel, Olamilekan Adegbite and his counterpart in the Ministry of Communications and Digital Economy, Isa Pantami, said they also presented to members of council scorecards of their ministries and parastatals for the first 100 days. 

The development has been the practice for ministries created in the second term of the Buhari presidency.

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