The Federal Government has approved a total of N57.56 billion for the completion of roads construction projects linking many towns across three states in the country.
The approval was given on Wednesday by the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo. Speaking after the meeting, the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola said that he presented two memoranda, for a cost revision of the Ilorin-Omuaran-Kabba road – linking Kwara and Kogi State. Fashola said that the project was previously awarded at N13.541 billion in 2013 and then we awarded Egbe-Kabba in 2017 to complete the link from imprint to Kabba.
“So we now have cost revision from previous award in 2013 because of exchange rate, price fluctuations. It has gone from N29.951 billion to N43.492 billion, so it’s a variation of N13.541 billion.
“Second contract approved was for the Odukpani junction to Apet Central in Cross River State. That is 73 kilometers at the cost of N14.014 billion This section completes the link from Calabar-Itu all the way to Ogoja-Gakem.
“If you have followed the development, we have Julius Berger on the Calabar-Itu section and Sematec on the Ugep-Alese section and PW on the Ikom-Mbok section and Wellstone on the Ogoja-Gakem section. So it was Odukpani to Apet that had no contract. That is where you would have reported in the past that some patrol tanker trucks and stuff have been stuck.
“So that contract has been awarded and hopefully as we head into dry season, reconstruction work will start there and continue along the entire leg. “We have gone round during the rainy season and identify roads that have been damaged as a result of the rains.
So subject to funding now, we have a plan to repairs, rehabilitate, reconstruct over the next seven months to May next year when there is dry weather. So you should see us across the various places where flood has done some damage trying to repair,” the minister explains.
Meanwhile, the Minister of State, Aviation, Mr. Hadi Sirika also said that the Council approved the procurement and installation and commissioning of Instrument of Landing System (ILS) DME, – an instrument landing system that guides pilots and planes to the central line of the runway and to the threshold. Sirika said that the systems will be installed in Abuja, Kaduna, Benin, Ibadan and Enugu airports.
According to the Aviation minister, the contract was awarded a long time ago but due to exchange rate, we had to bring it back to council, it suffered lack of budgetary allocations. So we came back to council to have it redominated. He said that the contract was awarded in December 2011 but nothing happened because there was no budgetary allocation, “therefore it suffered these fluctuations of forex change.”
The initial cost was N1,590,361,027.20 billion but it has been re-dominated N3,149,740,995.42 billion. “It was awarded at a time the Naira was N154 to a dollar but now is N305. So council has approved and the user department is Nigeria Airspace Management Agency (NAMA).
“This is a very important instrument for us, to be able to operate in poor weather conditions and to be able to take the planes down to the central lines of the runway for safe pilotage. So this is a safety concern and gladly it has been approved. Also, the Minister of Interior, Gen. Abdulrahman Dambazzau said that the Council approved a memo for the procurement of arms and ammunition for the armed guards of the prisons.
As you know there is a need to secure all our prisons, particularly where we have inmates that require maximum security. According to Dambazzau, if you recalled not too long ago out prison in Minna was attacked from the outside and freed some of the dangerous prisoners.
“The prison has an armed squad. We realize after investigation of that attack that one of the major shortcomings within that prison was lack of adequate arms and ammunition. “We are procuring 400 pieces of beretta assault rifles with 20,000 rounds. These rounds are peculiar to those weapons at the cost of N272,489,280 with period of delivery of 120 days,” the minister explained.
Credit: Daily Times