BusinessDay

FG to tackle erosion in six geo-political zones

...as FEC approves N75.78bn projects

The Federal Executive Council (FEC) on Wednesday approved various contracts covering transportation and erosion controls for the six geo-political zones of the country and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), worth N76.78b

Lai Mohammed, Minister of Information and Culture, while briefing State House Journalists, after the first weekly FEC meeting for 2022, which was presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, disclosed that the FCT had the biggest approvals with two projects worth N56.2 billion.

The minister revealed that erosion control is topping government attention, following its devastating effect in many states.

He disclosed that the President had given marching orders for the projects to be executed before the next rainy season

The FCT Minister who also briefed disclosed that FEC also approved contracts for the construction of Kuje 105 highway, access road and car park for Abuja Light Rail station.

According to him, “ Council approved two contracts for the FCT including for the Full Scope Development of Federal Capital Territory Highway 105, Kuje Road, from Airport Expressway to Kuje Junction Stage 1, Abuja at the cost of N54,946,009,160.04.

“It was awarded to Messrs Arab Contractors OAO Nigeria Limited with a completion period of 48 months.

“The second contract award is for the construction of Access Road and Car Park for Abuja Light Rail Stations – Gbazango Station of the Federal Capital City, Abuja – Lot 7 at the cost of N1,291,568,845.33.

“It was awarded in favour of Messrs CBC Global Civil and Building Construction Nigeria Limited with a completion period of 8 months.”

The Minister who also spoke on the Apo-Karshi road, said the road should have been completed, before now, but for funding and other challenges, including design error.

“I do know that just before I took my (Covid) break, a team from the relevant departments interfaced with them and they were very clear. I will try as much as possible to get this project over with at the level of my office by making sure that funding is adequately provided.”

Read also: Buhari order completion of projects, as Osinbajo presides over first 2022 FEC

The Minister of Information on his part, gave a breakdown of the 14 projects approved for award under the Ecological Fund spanning the six geo-political zones of the country.

He explained that two memos were presented on behalf of President Muhammadu Buhari including the one that sought approval for the award of contracts for the 2022 emergency procurement of first and second quarters accelerated soil erosion, flood and pollution control intervention projects.

Mohammed revealed that over 14 ecological contracts were approved at a total cost of about N15.1 billion.

The projects, he said, are spread across the six geopolitical zones, with each zone having two each, in the south-east, two in the south-west, two in the south-south; northeast has two, northwest has three, north central, but for FCT which has three.

“What I want to add here is that most of these projects, when completed, are handed over to the beneficial committees. But the intervention of the Ecological Office is massive, huge and If we can complete 261 in six years, all that shows is that an average of about 40 or more every year.

“The other memo is of equal importance, on behalf of Mr President. It is the memo seeking approval for the award of contract for the provision of various agricultural inputs and equipment for the National Youth farmers scheme.

“As you are aware, we have the National Youth farmers scheme under the National Agricultural Land Development Authority. Here, four contracts were awarded for the total sum of N1billion, N393 million naira with various competition periods.”

Mohammed pointed out that the present administration has intervened in 291 projects out of which 263 have been completed and handed over to beneficiary communities and institutions while a total of 28 are at various stages of completion.

In his address, Amaechi said he presented four memos on behalf of his ministry, which were all approved by FEC.

He said FEC approved a memo for the clearing of equipment for the deep blue project, “which will enable us to sight some of these projects in the coastal towns along the coasts,” at the cost of N2.7 billion to be paid to the clearing agents.

The Transportation Minister said FEC also approved a contract for the reconstruction of the narrow gauge track from Niger to Baro

“So, there will now be a rail line from Baro to Minna to join the narrow gauge so that when cargoes come to Baro, they can then be evacuated through the narrow gauge,” he stated.

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