‘Vandalisation, theft will render Second Niger Bridge unmotorable’
The Federal Government has warned that vandalisation and theft of fittings, if unchecked, might render the Second Niger Bridge unmotorable. The government subsequently called on security agencies to intensify surveillance on the infrastructure to curtail destructive activities of miscreants.
Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Works and Housing, Mahmuda Mamman, made the call when he visited the bridge to ascertain the level of the recent vandalisation of the metal components.
According to her, the only way to address the situation is for security agencies to intensify surveillance on the bridge to curtail the activities of the miscreants, who are after mental components.
He said: “We are here to see the level of vandalisation of the Second Niger Bridge. It was unfortunate that all of us woke up to the trending news of vandalisation of some metal components on the bridge.
“This is a massive investment put up by the Federal Government to ease movement of goods and services in Nigeria. To me, free movement is a basic human right, and all of us must take collective responsibility to safeguard it.
“We have interfaced with the contractor handling the project, Julius Berger, and it is really unfortunate. The Federal Government has actually done what it is supposed to do.”
Speaking further, Mamman said the Federal Government had written to security agencies concerned, asking them to intensify surveillance activities along the road so that such things will not happen again.
At the same time, the host communities, he said, have a responsibility to play because safeguarding national assets is not a responsibility of one man; it is a collective responsibility.
He added: “The miscreants are actually after the metal components on the bridge; anything metal, the miscreants are after that and they will be vandalised and at the end of the day, if care is not taken, the entire bridge will become unmotorable.
“That is why it is good for us as stakeholders to make sure we safeguard this infrastructure in the interest of public good and the nation.” On the delay in the completion of the project, he said: “We have interfaced with the contractor and he said the major challenge is security.
“With the recent development, we are hoping that in the next three weeks, everything about the Second Niger Bridge would be completed.
“The bridge is still under maintenance by the construction company that built it, and before the handing over, l am sure that most of the things that were vandalised would be replaced.”
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