Umahi decries dilapidated federal roads in Anambra, other South-East states

Minister of Works, Senator David Umahi has decried the poor state of federal roads in the South-East geo-political zone especially Anambra and Ebonyi states.

Umahi made his feelings known during a courtesy visit on Anambra Governor, Prof. Charles Soludo Saturday night in Awka.

The Minister said Anambra and Ebonyi were competing for the worst in terms of poor federal road projects in the country.

Umahi who before meeting Soludo had inspected Enugu-bound lane of Onitsha/Enugu expressway passed vote of no confidence on the consultants supervising the reconstruction of the road.

He regretted that the handlers of the very busy road were exposing road users to untold hardship.

“I am a bit disappointed with the state of Enugu/Onitsha expressway, I have directed both the contractors and consultants to a meeting this evening with the Governor.

“I have equally passed vote of no confidence on the consultants”, he said.

He directed the firm to immediately rehabilitate the bad spots, causing vehicles to fall and other sundry hiccups on Enugu- Onitsha expressway.

The Minister said that he was personally concerned due to series of calls and compliants coming from the same road.

“whenever I asked MTN Nigeria what was the problem, they will say we have 100 percent funding and when I speak with the chairman of RCC construction firm, he will say funding is the problem.

“We will all meet to night and sort out these problems because we cannot have one or two contractors doing 200 kilometers of road for seven years”, he said.

Umahi who noted that states in the South-East geo-political zone were not fairly treated on MTN Nigeria Tax Credit decision, said he was confident that Mr President would look into the matter in due course.

“Yes Enugu and Abia states benefitted, but that cannot be compared with other zones got on the MTN Nigeria Tax Credit sharing formula.

“I know as a man of justice and equity President Bola Tinubu will look into the matter because development thrive on fairness and equity”, he said.

Gov. Charles Soludo while responding, said he was overwhelmed when President Bola Tinubu appointed Umahi his minister of works.

“Umahi’s appointment is prayer answered for me because it is like a perfect round peg in a round hole”, he said.

He regretted that the entire federal roads in Anambra were all gone, adding that urgent actions were needed to reduce the sufferings road users on the roads.

Soludo who appealed to the minister to replicate what he did on road construction in Ebonyi across the country, advocated for what he tagged meta-budget on road projects.

According to him, the initiative would encourage the National Assembly to make adequate budgetary provisions for long road projects covering more than four years period.

He said when this is done, government would no longer required to talk about budgetary allocation on existing roads yearly, but would be spending on already approved fund to end problem of poor funding”, he said.

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