Kwara residents have called on the government not to abandon ongoing projects in the state, but ensure they are completed for the benefit of the communities.
This is in line with the launch of the state owned asphalt plant acquired by the state government in Ilorin to ensure constant renovation and construction of roads across the state.
The State Governor, Abdulfatah Ahmed noted that the asphalt plant cost the government 200 million Naira and has the capacity of 25 tons per hour to substantially reduce the cost of road construction and maintenance.
After the launching of the asphalt plant, the government immediately started the renovation and construction of roads especially across the state capital.
The State Commissioner for Works and Transport, Yahaya Aro and some officials of the ministry started by inspecting the Egbejila Airport road which will serve as a bye pass for the split diamond underpass, to be built at Geri Alimi roundabout.
The seven kilometre road project is expected to be completed in three months and the ministry officials have urged the contractors to brace up.
Also at Asalapa Abayawo road in IIorin East Local Government, the commissioner expressed satisfaction with the level of work as asphalt is being laid on the three kilometre road.
The residents and some motorists expressed gratitude to the state government for the commencement of the road projects but however expressed doubt on the sincerity of the state government to complete the project without being abandoned.
At the Henry George Unilorin road, the commissioner was not pleased with some potholes noticed on the just finished road project and challenged the contractor to rectify it immediately.
In an interview, the Commissioner lauded the initiative of the state governor on the need to embark on the completion of the road projects. He warned the contractors not to be involved in shady jobs, to avoid being blacklisted by the government.
The Federal Government has promised a better national budget in 2017 to address the issue of abandoned projects across Nigeria.
The government also pledged to bring a rest to the crisis of confidence over the 2016 Budget, which has been fraught with allegation of padding right from the beginning.
The Minister of National Planning and Budget, Mr Udo Udoma, disclosed this on Wednesday at a two-day conference on capital projects, implementation and monitoring organised by the Nigerian Institute of Quantity Surveyors (NIQS) in Makurdi, the Benue State capital.
The Minister, who was represented by the Director of Budget Planning, Mrs Olasunbor Ayinde, hinted that the 2017 Budget would attain uniform cost price for all items presented by MDAs to fund the abandoned projects spread across the country.
President of the NIQS, Mercy Iyortyer, expressed worry over the more than 19,000 abandoned projects across Nigeria, including the Benue State Sheraton Hotel which has remained uncompleted after 33 years.
The Benue State Governor, Mr Samuel Ortom, who was represented by his deputy, Benson Abounu, blamed the spate of uncompleted projects on lack of ethical behaviour on the part of professionals.
The Senate Committee Chairman on Public Procurement, Senator Mohammed Abdulsalami, on his part explained the controversy of budget padding while he blamed the legislature and the executive for lack of restraint.
Governor Tanko Al-makura has revoked the contracts of some abandoned projects in Karu Local Government Area of the state.
He made this clear while inspecting the uncompleted bridge leading to the popular orange market in Marraraba and the Mararraba-Kabayi road in Karu Local Government Area of the state.
Mr Al-makura, who expressed dissatisfaction with the level of work, believes the revocation will enable the projects to be completed before the rain sets in and also help ease the difficulties faced by traders and motorists.
“Having given the statutory 28-day notice to this contractor who has been working on this bridge for two years and he has not been able to meet up the timeline, I have hereby revoked the contract.
“We have already got someone who will embark on the completion of the contract with the same amount that is the balance of the contract sum.
“To fast-track the job we will give him half of the amount to ensure that work starts in earnest. I am giving him two months within which to complete this bridge,” he said.
He also revealed that the Ministry of Works had revoked the contracts for other projects in similar state, “We want to see what we can do to reduce the hardship the residents within the axis are suffering before the rains get too serious,” he added.