From Maduabuchi Nmeribeh, Kano
The chairman, House Committee on Works in the House of Representatives, Engr. Kabir Abubakar Bichi, has conveyed the disappointment of the National Assembly over the delay in the completion of the Abuja-Kaduna-Kano Federal road being handled by leading construction companies-Julius Berger and Dantata & Sawoe.
Engr. Kabir Bichi complained bitterly to Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje, during a courtesy visit to the Governor’s office, lamenting that hapless Nigerians and road users have been suffering untold hardship, because of the inability of the construction companies to complete the project in good time, despite being mobilized.
He said the National Assembly leadership is grossly disturbed over the slow pace of the Kano-Zaria-Kaduna-Abuja expressway, Kano-Maiduguri expressway and Kano Western Bypass road, among others.
The law-maker further lamented that the projects were poorly handled, as the execution of the contracts are snail-paced.
The Committee, according to the Chairman, were on their inspection tour to Federal Government projects under the federal Ministry of Works, while showing the dissatisfaction of the Committee over the abysmal performance of the contractors in all the projects visited.
The House Committee on Works, however, vowed not to leave the lackadaisical attitude go unattended.
The Chairman further lamented that, “Your Excellency, it is sad to note that out of N155B for Kano-Abuja expressway, Julius Berger collected more than N70B, but the work done so far is not appreciable at all Sir. From Zuba to Kaduna Phase I, they did only 5 percent of 100km road.
He regretted that the two companies were unable the complete the projects, even after 26 months.
“What remains for them is only nine months to come. Sir, we asked them if they had any challenge, they said there was no challenge. But just look at what they are doing now.
“Your Excellency, Kano-Abuja road is very important to our economy Sir. Apart from the economic aspect of the road, it is sad to also note that 2 to 5 people die on that road on daily basis. We have to support President Muhammadu Buhari to save the lives of Nigerians,” he said.
According to him, “from the 70km from Kaduna to Zaria, only 11km was completed. Disclosing that, from Zaria to Kano only 11km was completed.
“For Dantata & Sawoe handling Kano Western Bypass only 30 – 40 percent is completed after collecting more than N20B.”
The Committee members, however, commended Ganduje for the infrastructural development in the state under his watch, pointing out that, “Kano has recently become a beacon of hope and an exemplary political entity, that needs to be copied by other states of the Federation.”
In his remarks, Ganduje said, “your oversight function is very important for the development of the nation as a whole. And without you visiting such sites you will not be able to understand what contractors are doing.
“The Kano-Maiduguri road expressway is over 10 years. So also Western Bypass. So also Katsina-Tsanyawa-Bichi-Kano expressway is also going at a very slow rate.”