By Mashe Umaru Gwamna
The Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola,has assured Nigerians that his ministry has made plans to immediately remove any broken down truck on the highways as part of measures to ensure free flow of traffic this year while construction work is on -going.
Fashola gave the assurance while inspecting the rehabilitation of Odukpani- Akpet-Alesi -Ugep road in Cross River state in conclusion of his one week tour of some federal roads in the South-South and South-East geopolitical zones of the country.
He said government intends to adopt a strategy of immediate removal of broken down trucks along Nigerian highways to avoid commuters being delayed.
He added that this would apply to all the highways where trucks get stuck easily like the Numan road in Taraba state, Calabar-Itu road and Abeokuta – Ota road.
This was contained in a statement signed by Deputy Director(Press),Stephen Kilebi which stated that, “We want to ensure that this time our contractors are better prepared for the rainy season, so we need to evolve a strategy where our contractors are mindful that yes we have the construction work but the roads must remain motorable during the rainy season.”
The Minister, however, advised vehicle owners to ensure that their vehicles were well maintained in preparation for the rainy season to avoid break down.
He said the 76km Alesi-Ugep road which links Iyamoyung and Akpet communities to other parts of the state used to be one of the troubled spots in the last few years but had become passable.
Fashola further said President Muhammadu Buhari was anxious to see that the 67km road was completed knowing its importance to the economy of Cross River State.
Speaking earlier, Federal Controller of Works for Cross River State, Engr. Bassey Nsentip disclosed that some communities had benefited economically from the construction of the road adding that the contractor employed 176 skilled and unskilled workers in executing the road project.
Engr. Nsentip also said suppliers of building materials and food vendors benefitted immensely from the project. He disclosed that the project was 97% completed as only surface dressing, road markings and signs were yet to be done. He said when all those things were put in place the project would be ready for inauguration.