Umahi gives contractors handling Benin- Ekpoma- Auchi- Okpella- Okene- Lokoja road marching order

The Minister of Works, Senator David Umahi,  has issued a marching order to all the contractors handling the Benin- Ekpoma- Auchi- Okpella- Okene- Lokoja road to immediately commence accelerated work on the rehabilitation of the road or face termination of their contracts.

Umahi gave the order during his inspection visit to the various project sites in Edo State at the weekend.

The minister who disclosed that the federal government had released funds to the contractors handling the projects, warned that contractors who fail to fully mobilise and commence accelerated rehabilitation works on the projects immediately would not only have their contracts terminated but would also be blacklisted.

Speaking after a meeting with the Governor of Edo State, Goodwin Obaseki, the minister described as unacceptable the delay of the contractors in fully mobilizing to the site and effectively commencing rehabilitation work despite Mr. President’s prompt release of funds to them for the projects.

On the recent protest along the Jattu axis of the Benin- Auchi highway by residents of the area which disrupted vehicular movements, the minister said his meeting with the Governor was to brainstorm on the drastic measures to tackle the issues affecting the progress of work in the area.

“We are concerned about what is happening between Benin-Ekpoma-Auchi-Okpella and the axis of Kogi State. That is what we have been brainstorming on. I have worked with him throughout last night to direct that the road should be unblocked, and if you see the grievances of those people you will not blame them so much, because people are dying, trucks are falling,” the minister said.

On his part, the governor who thanked the minister for his deep sense of commitment to the development of road infrastructure in Nigeria, assured of his administration’s unwavering support for the concrete technology initiative of the Renewed Hope administration which he said is the best model for the road infrastructure along the East, West, and some other parts of the country.

The minister,  who also inspected the Lokoja – Benin Road Dualisation Projects, section IV: Benin – Ehor road in Edo State handled by RCC Nig. Ltd; the section III: Ehor – Auchi in Edo State handled by Dantata & Sawoe Nig. Ltd; and the section II: Auchi – Okene in Edo/Kogi States handled by Mothercat Nig. Ltd tasked them with the best standard and timely delivery of the projects.

He was also at the spot where the protesting residents blocked vehicular movements where he addressed them on the efforts of the Mr. President towards improving the condition of roads in the state.

“Mr President has directed me to go around the entire 36 states and brief him on the state of the roads. No contractor is being owed a kobo from Warri down to Kogi State. We are addressing the situation here, and you will see action from Monday,” the minister said.