From Yakubu Mustapha Minna
The Niger State Governor, Alhaji Abubakar Sani Bello has approved a sum of N6 billion for surface dressing of about 230 kilometers roads under Rural Access and Mobility Project (RAMP) aimed at addressing infrastructural deficit on truck B and C roads in the state.
State Project Coordinator, Hassan Baba Yusuf disclosed this at a press briefing yesterday in Minna, noted that RAMP since 2013 constructed 117km during first face and 402km during second face including 30 river criss bridges in various communities of the state.
He said that it’s a World Bank, French Development Agency and Niger State government Programme targeted at improving rural transportation in which 391 communities have benefited by having easy access to social economic facilities.
Yusuf explained that with the impressive performance of Niger and Osun states have migrated to RAMP 111 that covers agricultural projects like market facilities, store facilities to curb post harvest lost hence the Programme in the state had expended N2.4 billion in first face and N7 billion during second face respectively.
Meanwhile, the governor has also approved a sum of N1.6 billion to enhanced the operations of RAMP in the Niger state to be used for compensations, resettlements, allowances, taxes and staff training just as the present administration has paid N206 million out of over N400million paid so far as counterpart funds also approved N120 million as counterpart fund.
Yusuf further informed that 180 men were engaged for the routine maintenance of the said roads with a stipend of N20,000 monthly hence no fewer than 728,891 people have already benefited however created 215 jobs with annual mechanized maintenance of those roads for its sustainance.
He emphasized that the scheme has impacted on the benefiting communities in the areas of easy access to health facilities, increased school’s enrollment, reduced transport costs and improved the leaving standard of the rural dwellers economically and socially.