By Adeola Badru
The Federal Government has included the development of road infrastructure in the southwest and other areas of the country as its top priority.
The Director of Southwest Roads, Federal Ministry of Works and Housing, Mr. Adedamola Kuti, made the disclosure yesterday while addressing journalists at the end of a two-day inspection tour of the Federal Government’s ongoing highway. Projects in the state of Oyo.
The director, who was accompanied by the Oyo State Works Comptroller in the Ministry, Mr. Kayode Ibrahim, said that it was the policy of the Federal Government to complete the entire journey. Projects as soon as possible.
He said that the completion of the highway projects would connect the different sections of the country and facilitate vehicular movement, adding that the current administration is highly committed to infrastructure development.
He pointed out that infrastructure projects were being carried out in all parts of the country, and emphasized that practically everywhere in the country there is one ongoing project or another.
Kuti said Nigerians were pleased with the breakthroughs made by President Mohammadu Buhari’s administration in massive road construction / rehabilitation projects across the country.
The director admitted funding shortages, saying: “all projects have a funding challenge, but the government is doing everything possible to ensure that all its projects are funded, to encourage contractors who are committed.”
“The government is trying to raise money here and there, for some of their projects, the result of part of the money raising is what we are seeing.”
“It is not that the government is borrowing money and people will not see what it has used for, this is part of what it is using.”
He urged the media to do more to inform Nigerians in general about the infrastructure development projects being carried out by the current administration.
The director and his team inspected the 52-kilometer Oyo-Ogbomosho highway, the Ibadan highway from Liberty Stadium, the construction of a bridge over the Ogun River at km 37 of the Maya – Iseyin highway and the 28-mile Okeho-Iseyin highway, 65 km.
Kuti, who said the tour was a continuation of an inspection of projects in the Southwest area, expressed satisfaction with the performance of the contractors handling the respective projects.
“So far so good, we are happy with what we have seen. The freedom highway project is a special repair in the municipality, no serious work has been started there, they are only working on the drainage structures. “
“At Maya-Iseyin Road, the bridge is already in place, although the contractor, Preconsmith Construction Limited, was not in place, we are impressed with the work underway there.”
“On the 28.65 km Iseyin-Okeho highway, managed by a local contractor, HMF Construction Ltd, the project is just six months old and we have seen the level of completion in this short time.”
“I am very impressed that in six months he has worked at an appreciable level, unlike some contractors who would still be struggling to get to the site.”
“The people of Oke-Ogun in Oyo state are seeing the impact of the government, because of these projects, no one will complain about abandonment, here is a border town – Nigeria shares a boundary with the Republic of Benin, so people it has not been forgotten. “
“Even though the people in this area are farther from the city, the government’s presence is still felt in this place.”
“And we have a lot of agricultural products that come out of this environment, so by the time this road is finished, agricultural products can leave this axis with ease; that’s the essence of this draft.“
“We hope that the national economy will be better, in order to secure more funds to carry out some of these projects,” he said.
On the Oyo – Ogbomoso highway, the director recalled that the Federal Executive Council recently approved the increase of the initial contract amount for the highway from 47.50 billion naira to 105.04 billion naira, as a result of the adjustment in the scope of work; such as an increase in bearing resistance in the road pavement and the volume of the road thickness.
He said the work carried out so far on the road was of high quality and could stand the test of time, adding that the approval of the increased contract amount would improve the rapid completion of the project.
The expressway being operated by the Reynolds Construction Company (RCC) is the second section of the Ibadan-Ilorin highway and a subsection of a main A1 highway that originated from Apapa Wharf in Lagos and ends in Sokoto state.
The highway is of vital importance in the socioeconomic importance of the country, since the country basically depended on the highways as the main means of transportation, which is why the highway connects the southern part of the country with the north.
In its separate comments, the RCC Draft The Manager and Managing Director of HMF Construction Ltd, Mr. Yuri Visman and Mr. Ayedesi Adeoye, respectively, promised to deliver quality work.
The duo said the fund was the biggest challenge they faced in the course of executing their respective contracts.
According to Adeoye, the sum of the contract for the Iseyin-Okeho highway draft that was awarded in April is 6 billion naira “and we are working to ensure that the project is delivered on time.
“Our completion time is 18 months and our mission is to be at 60 percent of the completion stage by April next year, provided the government makes available funds for draft. “
Visman, who expressed his satisfaction with the approval of the increase by the Federal Executive Council, urged the Federal Government to quickly release funds for the project for Fastrack to complete in a timely manner.