By Mashe Umaru Gwamna
The Minister of Works and Housing ,Babatunde Fashola, said the trans-saharan road linking from Nigeria to Algeria will be completed in three years.
Fashola made the disclosure yesterday during a joint inspection visit by the Trans-Saharan Road Liaison Committee (TRLC).
He explained that, the Abuja-Kaduna-Zaria-Kano Dual Carriageway of 375.9km is being handled by Julius BergerNigeria Limited.
Consequently, he added that part of the project is been handled by China Harbour Engineering Compay Limited (CHEC) is the expansion of 5.4km of the Abuja-Keffi Expressway and Dualisation of the Keffi-Akwanga-Lafia-Makurdi road.
The project which is also located in FCT, Nasarawa and Benue states, has a total length of 227.2km, including the Abuja-Keffi and Keffi-Makurdi sections.
“The 5.4km Abuja-Keffi section will have two-lane auxiliary roads on both sides of the existing six-lane section.
The 221.8km Keffi-Makurdi section will see an expansion of the existing two-way two-lane section to a two-way four-lane section.”
According to the Minister,the main work to be done in the execution of the project include sub-grade, bridge, and culvert, as well as drainage and pavement.
The minister said, ”What we are concerned about in this committee,is the Lagos to Algiers highway.
“The Lagos-Ibadan-Oyo road, the Jebba-Mokwa-Kaduna-Kano road, and the Abuja-Kano road are the major components.
“`So Mali is doing its own, Algeria is doing its own, Niger is doing its own. Every country is handling their own”,Fashola stated.
He noted that Nigeria accounts for over 1000 kilometers length out of the over 9000 kilometers roads in the six sub-saharan countries.
It could be recalled that the committee was formed in 1966 to establish a road link across the six countries to encourage growth, socio-economic activities, development, cooperation, and trade.
Also, The Secretary General of the TRLC, Ayadi Mohammed, said that the inspection of the project provided a good opportunity for the committee members to evaluate the state of the construction of the roads.
Mohammade said so far the work of the committee is commendable, appreciated
Nigeria government for the local content policy in the construction industry, hoping that such could be replicated in other member countries.
The tran-Saharan roads are expected to serve 37 regions in Africa and connect 74 urban centres as well as 60 million people across the six countries that are members of the committee.”
In Nigeria,the routes will pass through Lagos and Ibadan, to Ilorin, Jeba, Kaduna and to Kano where Nigeria shares border with the Republic of Niger.
The trans-Saharan road liaison committe is made up of six countries, which are,Nigeria, Niger, Chad, Tunisia, Algeria, and Mali.
Meanwhile, the inspection was part of the programme schedule for 70th Session of the Trans Sahara Road Liaison Committee which holds 11th to 12th November 2019(TRLC) and usually has meetings after four years.