Akure-Ado-Ekiti road ‘ll be constructed with concrete technology – Umahi - AMEBO NEWSPAPERS NG.

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Akure-Ado-Ekiti road ‘ll be constructed with concrete technology – Umahi

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The Minister of Works, Mr David Umahi, has declared that the ongoing Akure-Ado-Ekiti Expressway would be redesigned and constructed with concrete rather than asphalt.

The former Minister of Works, Mr Babatunde Fashola had began the construction of the road in May 2023, shortly before the end of the last administration of Muhammadu Buhari.

Umahi said Nigerians would see more concrete pavements on the roads as it has a longer life span than roads made of bitumen.

He stated this in Akure during a courtesy visit to the acting Governor of Ondo State, Mr. Lucky Aiyedatiwa, on Friday evening while on inspection of federal roads in the South-West region of the country.

According to him, concrete roads had been tested in several states and it has a life span of 50 years, compared to asphalt roads that would only last for 15 years.

The minister explained that any road construction contract that the job was not more than 20 per cent done would be redesigned to concrete pavement roads.

He added that the importation of bitumen alone was putting more pressure on the naira and with the use of concrete pavement roads, it would be more of local content.

He said, “A very important thing that I must let you know is the introduction of concrete technology in our roads. My argument is that you see a lot of roads that are built on concrete with a shelf life of 50 years.

“But there is no asphalt road here, especially in the South-South, South-East and South-West even if it’s done by top contractors will not last more than 15 years.

”You see jobs that are still ongoing and that is why we are going round and then redesigning a portion of roads that are maybe 10 to 20 per cent completion and we are sure that this is the way to go and it has a guarantee of 50 years.

"Not only that, you find out that we are having so much pressure on the naira, the importation of bitumen is a lot of pressure on the naira. So cement is a local content, and almost everything we need is not being produced in Nigeria.

“Now local content, The high cost of petroleum products and the very volatile nature of the industry is also another point.

“Almost all our projects that were awarded three years ago are due for review, some have been reviewed through VOP (Variation of Price) and so it doesn’t leave us with an assurance that if a project is started it would appropriated for and it could be completed.

“The recently awarded Akure-Ita-Ogbolu-Iju-Ado road would be redesigned to concrete pavements road.”

The immediate former Governor of Ebonyi State noted that road construction was a dynamic sector as prices of materials needed kept on soaring and varying and despite all, the guarantee for road might not last for the designed life span.

“Let me put it on record that bitumen imported in the 1950s, and 1960s are of higher quality than what we have today so we have a lot of problems on our hands and that is why we are courageous to introduce the concrete road department,” he stated.

In his remarks,  acting Governor Lucky Aiyedatiwa commended the minister for his zeal on his official engagements, stressing that most of the federal roads in the state were either deteriorated or poorly maintained, while many suffered severe degradation.

Aiyedatiwa called for the dualisation of the Ore-Ondo-Akure road and the need for the rehabilitation of the Ore-Okitipupa area among other federal roads in the state.

“It is noteworthy to mention that the intervention of my boss (Governor Rotimi Akeredolu) is principally what has made these roads remain in their present motorable state,” he noted.

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