The Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing on Monday inaugurated the rehabilitation of the Lagos-Abeokuta Expressway, with an inspection tour of the road.
The Director, Federal Highways, South-West, Mr. Olalekan Busari, said the road had been neglected by previous administrations before it was re-awarded to Julius Berger for construction this month.
According to him, the project is divided into two sections, the first of which starts from Ile Zik in Lagos, spanning about 20 kilometres, while the second section falls in Ogun State and covers 60km.
Busari said the project had suffered several setbacks in the past but that the current administration was resuscitating it as part of its mandate to deliver infrastructure development to Nigerians.
He stated, “It is a complete total rehabilitation of the entire road this time around, and it is awarded at N22.387bn and the contract period is for two and half years, and we hope the contractor will actually deliver.
“Julius Berger has the capacity and the Federal Government is very determined to properly fund this road project so as to deliver it on time. The first section was to rehabilitate the Ota-Abeokuta section, which was awarded to Julius Berger in 2009 at the sum of N11.6bn. However, due to lack of funding, the project dragged on until 2010 that it was completed at a contract price of N14.6bn.”
Busari added, “Addendum 2 was awarded in 2006, consisting of the rehabilitation of the construction of the flyover at Ota and the construction of the roundabout, as well as the strengthening of the Lagos-Ota road at a sum of N9.6bn that time. The contract was eventually partially completed in 2010. In 2011, Section 3, Phase 3 was awarded at a contract sum of N10.6bn.
“The scope of work was to complete the work on the section on phase two, which is the construction of the flyover, as well as construction of the crash barriers and the strengthening of the Lagos road. It was awarded in 2011 at a contract sum of N10.6bn due to delay in the execution of the project and lack of funding by the previous administration. The job started and was stopped again in 2012 basically due to lack of funding and lack of priority.”
Busari explained that the road was important to the socio-economic development of the South-West and the entire nation, as well as it being the link to the Republic of Benin.
The Federal Controller of Works, Lagos, Mr. Adedamola Kuti; and the Federal Controller, Works, Ogun, Mr. Olukayode Popoola, both said they had put measures in place for traffic management and diversions so as to reduce the hardship of road users
Julius Berger’s West Division Manager, Mr. Wolfgang Loesser, stated that the firm was first carrying out repairs of bad portions of the highway to ease gridlock before the major rehabilitation work.