Minister of Works threatens Governors asks them to monitor, supervise federal road projects in their States

Minister of Works threatens Governors asks them to monitor, supervise federal road projects in their States

The Minister of Works, Chief David Umahi, has urged State Governors to get involved in monitoring and supervising federal road projects in their states to ensure adherence to specifications.

Umahi gave the advice when he paid a courtesy call on Gov. Hope Uzodimma at the Government House, Owerri, on Friday night.

The Chief Press Secretary to Uzodimma, Mr Oguwike Nwachuku, made the disclosure in a statement on Saturday.

The statement noted that the minister threatened to decline approvals for jobs done if the Commissioner for Works of any state is not part of such a repair job.

“The Minister, who was in the state to inspect ongoing Federal Government projects, marveled at the quality of federal government roads, which Uzodimma initiated and completed within a short period of time.

“Umahi noted that the Owerri to Okigwe road happens to be “one of the best roads in all the roads” he has visited as a minister, commending, congratulating and rating the Governor highly,” the statement indicated.

The minister said Imo had about three federal road projects, but only one was ongoing.

Umahi directed the contractor handling the Owerri-Okpalla-Port Harcourt-Enugu Express road to step up and complete the first section, while the other 46km stretch should be redesigned to meet the new standards and demands.

“Umahi promised to accommodate the construction of the Orlu-Mgbe-Akokwa-Uga road in the 2024 budget.

“He also announced his intention to terminate the Ama Nwozuzu-Orie Amaraku road contract because no meaningful job had been done so far even after the contractor had been mobilised to site,” the statement noted.

Umahi commended Uzodimma for completing a number of federal roads in the state and promised to help actualise the agreements already reached between the State and Federal Governments by the previous administration.

In his remarks, Uzodimma commended President Bola Tinubu for appointing Umahi as Minister of Works.

The governor reminded the minister that Nigerians were watching to see him replicate what he did in Ebonyi State at the federal level.

Uzodimma said he secured approvals of former President Muhammadu Buhari to construct the Owerri-Okigwe and Owerri-Orlu roads, which have been completed.

He said the Owerri-Umuahia road was nearing completion.

The governor regretted that all efforts to get the contractor – RCCG – doing the Owerri-Aba road awarded some 14 years ago, have not yielded the desired result.

He commended Umahi for coming up with a model that would see to a comprehensive and total overhaul of all the federal roads in the country.

Uzodimma further commended the minister for accepting to take up the construction of Orlu-Mgbe-Akokwa-Uga road.

Uzodimma advocated a “comprehensive audit of the federal projects across the country to, not only know their level of completion, but also to ensure even spread among the geopolitical zones.”

The governor, who bemoaned the efficiency of Federal Road Maintenance Agency (FERMA), urged the minister to look beyond FERMA to ensure that “the old maintenance culture is adhered to.”

Uzodimma said Umahi’s introduction of concrete road technology will help create jobs and sustain the roads.

He announced plans to lead the South East leadership on a thank you visit to the President on the appointment of the minister and the Chief of Naval Staff, Adm. Emmanuel Ogala.

“The Igbos belong to the Nigerian project and are loyal to Nigeria. We need Nigeria just as Nigeria needs us,” he added. (NAN)

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