Gabriel Enenche —
Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari has directed the take over of construction works and completion of the N10.4 billion East-West Road project by the Ministry of Works and Housing. The project had been delayed for several years.
While taking responsibility for the road, Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola said that the directive is an uncommon act because, it is the decision of the Nigerian government for the project began by the Ministry of Works but, transferred to the Ministry of Niger Delta Affairs had to 13 years later, be transferred back to the Ministry of Works and Housing for completion.
Fashola, however, pleaded for peace in the communities to enable the ministry deliver the project on time. ‘One condition for any project to take place is communal peace. If we don’t have peace there, we cannot do anything,’ he said.
‘Progress has been made from 2009 till date no doubt but unfortunately that progress is not reported because of the passion with which the uncompleted part has been reported’.
He asked the Director overseeing the Office of the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Works and Housing, Engineer Chukwunwike Ogbonna Uzo to constitute a requisite team from the ministry to undertake an actual assessment with the contractors so that the ministry will be able to sign off on the proper engineering and civil construction terms at the point the ministry is taking over, adding that the president will be briefed on the progress of work done so far.