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Second Niger Bridge partly funded with recovered loots – Senate Committee

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The Senate Committee on Works led by Sen. Adamu Aliero on Wednesday inspected the progress of work on the second Niger Bridge and said that funding would not pose a challenge.

Aliero, who expressed satisfaction with the level of work done on the bridge, said one of the sources of funding by the Federal Government was the recovered loots from corrupt politicians.

The senate committee on works was accompanied on the inspection by the Controller of Works in Anambra, Mr Adeyemo Ajani.

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The chairman said that members of the committee were at the second Niger Bridge site to inspect the level of work done on the project which started in 2015.

“The funding arrangements are in place.

“Most of the contractors doing a contract with the Federal Ministry of Works are complaining of lack of funding, but this project is one that is not suffering from lack of funds.

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“Adequate arrangements have been made by the government to fund it with the National Sovereign Investment Authority and recovered looted funds.

“Any time the contractor generates a certificate, he is paid; that is why work is moving speedily and progressively,” the Senate committee chairman said.

He expressed optimism that if the present tempo was sustained, the federal government would be able to hand over the project by 2022.

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Responding to the concerns expressed by some Nigerians that Julius Berger’s consultant on the project lives in South Africa, Aliero said, “the consultant living in South Africa is not a problem.”

He added: “They have local partners that are doing the work for them while the consultant visits from time to time.

“There are many Nigerian engineers working in this place; 70 per cent of the labourers are Nigerians.

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“They are the ones providing the services while the company ensures compliance with the local content law.”

“They are doing the work at the highest level of engineering design.

“Adequate measures have been taken by the contractor to avoid all the mistakes of the past on the first Niger Bridge.

“That is why the design was given to a foreigner, a German, and it is being done in such a way that the bridge when constructed, would last for 100 years.”

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