The All Progressives Congress (APC) led administration of president Muhammadu Buhari, has said it is currently working on over 900 road construction the country.
This was disclosed by a think thank group of the party, under the aegis of APC Legacy and Awareness Campaign.
The group in a statement issued Wednesday by their coordinators, Ismail Ahmed, Lanre Issa -Onilu, Salihu Moh. Lukman and Tolu Ogunlesi, said over 900 active road contracts, covering the construction, reconstruction, or rehabilitation of more than 13,000km of federal roads and highways across the country, out of a total of 35,000km of Federal roads in existence are currently being executed in different parts of the country,
The group said that the number, which was sourced from the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing was no doubtva further prove n the priority which President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration has given to the provision of good roads to aid the free and comfortable movement for Nigerians, adding that the president has cumulatively devoted significantly more resources to road and transport infrastructure than any other administration since 1999, adding that the results are starting to emerge, in roads, bridges, highways, rail lines and stations, and air and seaports
It emphasized that while the administration has increased the amount of funding available for road projects, while also ensuring the resumption of work on abandoned projects, adding that in 2016, the President’s first full year in office, the roads budget went up to 260 billion Naira, for which about 200 billion Naira was released, as against a paltry 18 billion Naira budgeted by the past PDP government.
The statement disclosed further that the initiatives included the setting up of the Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund (PIDF), in 2018, with $650m in seed funding, deploying and executing of Presidential Executive Order 7, the Road Infrastructure Tax Credit Scheme, launching of the Highway Development and Maintenance Initiative (HDMI).
“Others included approving the establishment of a multi-billion dollar Infrastructure Corporation, InfraCorp, to mobilize and deploy funds towards viable, transformational infrastructure projects, issuance of Sovereign Sukuk Bonds (the first in the country’s history) dedicated to road infrastructure, and approving the National Public Buildings Maintenance Policy, the first in the country, to create an economy out of infrastructure maintenance.
“Therefore, the APC administration of President Buhari’s first priorities were to increase the amount of funding available for road projects, while also ensuring the resumption of work on abandoned projects. In 2016, the President’s first full year in office, the roads budget went up to 260 billion Naira, for which about 200 billion Naira was released.
“In the area of roads and bridges, work has since resumed on several stalled, abandoned or solution-defying road projects that were inherited, like the Loko-Oweto Bridge, Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, Sagamu-Benin Expressway, the Enugu-Port Harcourt Expressway, Onitsha-Enugu Expressway, Kano-Maiduguri Expressway, Abuja-Kaduna-Zaria-Kano Expressway, Obajana-Kabba Road, Ilorin-Jebba Road, Apapa-Oshodi-Oworonshoki Road, and several others are in progress, with some already close to completion.
“A brand new bridge in Ikom, Cross River State, has just been completed, to replace a dilapidated steel truss bridge originally built five decades ago, as has a new border bridge linking Nigeria and Cameroon, in the spirit of regional integration.
“Construction work on the Second Niger Bridge, a contract awarded multiple times between 2002 and 2015, but constantly stalled for lack of funding, finally kicked off in 2018, with guaranteed funding, for the first time in the history of the project. In 2017, construction finally commenced on the Bodo-Bonny Bridges and Road (linking Bonny Island to the Rivers Mainland), a project first mooted decades ago, and awarded a number of times without success, prior to the Buhari Administration,” the statement reads in parts,” it noted