• Monday, May 27, 2024
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BusinessDay

Senate compiles list of collapsed roads in Nigeria

Barau, ECOWAS speaker, proposes mediation committe on Niger, Mali, Burkina Faso

The Senate has set up an ad-hoc committee to come up with a compendium of all federal roads and erosion sites across the country awarded, but abandoned by contractors or have not been awarded.

The compilation is to be forwarded to the executive arm for urgent intervention due to worry over collapsing of road infrastructure in Nigeria.

The resolution was sequel to a motion, titled: “Collapse of road infrastructure in Nigeria”, by Jibrin Barau, the deputy Senate president and co-sponsored by other 108 senators during plenary on Wednesday.

Barau in his lead debate, lamented that many federal roads are in very deplorable conditions that hardly any part of the country can boast of a motorable road.

He maintained that some of the roads have been awarded for either construction or rehabilitation only to be abandoned by the contractors after moving to the site.

He noted that with sadness “concomitant loss of lives as a result of the bad state of the roads, as evidenced by the chilling statistics reeled out by the Federal Road Safety Corps, which is a price too high and too prohibitive to pay.”

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“Collapse of the road infrastructure has virtually cut off many parts of Nigeria, with its attendant negative impact on trade and commerce.

“The collapse has led to a decline in agricultural activities, adversely affecting the movement of agricultural produce from rural areas and across the country, resulting in a slide in the country’s agricultural output and economy, especially now that the country needs to diversify its economy,” he said.

In their contributions to the motion, other senators lamented the adverse effects of erosion and other factors on roads in their constituencies.

They called for urgent rehabilitation and reconstruction, where necessary, to save the lives and properties of the people.

The senators expressed regret that many have died in accidents caused by bad roads while many others have been forced to abandon their homes due to the collapse of bridges and drainages.

The Senate charged the Federal Government to consider the option of concessions by engaging credible construction firms after proper screenings to fix all bad roads across the country.

It also advised the government to seek alternative funding sources like the Muhammadu Buhari administration did with SUKUK and two others to enable it to deliver on road infrastructure projects.