The Federal Government has given Julius Berger Nigeria Plc and RCC Nigeria Limited, two contractors currently handling the rehabilitation of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, two months to complete the work.
Minister of Works, Mr. Mike Onolemenem, stated this on Monday, and announced that reconstruction work would commence thereafter.
He also said after reconstruction, toll gate would be reintroduced on the road but was silent on who would manage it and the cost of the project.
The minister spoke during a press conference at the Shagamu Interchange end of the road where one of our correspondents observed a Julius Berger team working simultaneously at three different points.
The minister said, “The recovery and rehabilitation work will last for eight weeks and between now and then, all the processes leading to the award of the reconstruction contract in line with the Public Procurement Act would have been completed. We expect that as soon as the rehabilitation work is completed, the reconstruction work will commence.”
This is coming exactly two weeks after the Federal Government had terminated a concession contract it granted Bi-Courtney Highways Services Limited to reconstruct and manage the road for alleged incompetence.
Onolemenem said on Monday that the termination of the contract was at no cost to the Federal Government directly.
He said, “The Federal Government initiated and terminated the concession contract based on what is contained in the agreement. The government did what it did to save lives on this road.”
The minister said the contractors had been directed to expedite work on the projects to substantially improve the condition of the road in the next two weeks ahead of the Christmas and end of year, due to the expected high volume of traffic.
The minister was, however, evasive in giving the cost of the rehabilitation project.
He said, “As for the cost, what we are using is the 2010 rate to do the emergency work on this road. But after the completion of this project, we will be finalising the design and other forms of work to be done on it.”
One of our correspondents, who drove from Lagos to Shagamu Interchange between 10am and 12 noon on Monday, found Julius Berger working at three different points.