The nation may soon witness a drastic transformation of some federal roads that are currently in a terrible state going by the promise made by President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday.
The President, who said in a new year nationwide broadcast that the Federal Road Maintenance Agency had been restructured for improved performance, declared that the agency was also given 12 weeks to fix a number of major roads in bad condition.
Specifically, the President said 44 roads would be given a new look by FERMA, adding that the roads cut across the six geo-political zones of the country.
“Management of the Federal Road Maintenance Agency has been reconstituted and has been charged with a 12-week rapid intervention in road repairs to cover all the geo-political zones. Government is undertaking repairs and maintenance of 44 roads within the six geo-political zones,” he said.
Buhari also said that 25 major roads would be funded with the N100bn Sukuk facility, adding that each geo-political zone would get an equal amount of N16.67bn. The Sukuk is an Islamic bond, structured in such a way as to generate returns to investors without infringing on Islamic law.
The Federal Government in October last year announced the commencement of the sale of a N100bn ($326m) seven-year Islamic bond on the local market, which the Debt Management Office said would yield a 16.47 per cent rental rate and payable semi-annually. It was oversubscribed.
The roads that would receive special attention were given as Oyo – Ogbomosho; Ofusu – Ore – Ajebandele-Sagamu; Yenagoa Road Junction – Kolo Otuoke – Bayelsa Palm; Enugu – Port Harcourt Dual Carriage Way; Onitsha – Enugu Expressway and Kaduna Eastern Bypass.
Others would involve the dualisation of Kano – Maiduguri Road; Abuja – Lokoja – Benin Road; and Suleja – Minna Road.
“In addition, government has approved work to start on the reconstruction of Abuja – Kaduna – Zaria – Kano road which is in a state of disrepair. Work will soon start and is expected to be completed in 2019,” the President said.