Tanker Explosion: Governor Bello Seeks FG’s Urgent Attention On Federal Roads In Kogi


Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello on Wednesday urged the Federal Government to urgently intervene and fix the bad federal roads in the state.

The governor said this during his visit to the Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola.

He told the minister that the deplorable state of all federal roads across the state have led to recurrent accidents in the state and appealed to the minister to expedite action in carrying out reconstruction of roads across the state to curtail the preventable accidents.

READ ALSO: At Least 23 Killed In Lokoja Tanker Explosion

Fashola in response said he has directed the Federal Road Maintenance Agency to immediately move into action to fix the bad portion of the road at the Felele end of the Okene/Lokoja/Abuja road.

He assured the governor that the ministry will use the remaining part of the year to achieve more in fulfilling the governor’s request in respect of federal roads in the state.

The governor’s visit to the minister came in the wake of a road accident involving a tanker and other vehicles on the Okene/Lokoja/Abuja road that resulted in an explosion that claimed over 20 lives in the Felele area of Lokoja on Wednesday.

Fashola commiserated with the governor, people, and government of Kogi State over the accident that claimed lives on Wednesday in Lokoja.

Commuters Lament Deplorable State Of Sango/Abeokuta Road

File Photo

Residents have lamented the deplorable state of the Sango /Abeokuta expressway noting that it has led to a constant gridlock and unnecessary delays for commuters trying to reach their destination.

Narrating their ordeal to Channels Television, some of the residents and road users in the area complained that the situation of the roads is worse off during the rainy season which always leads to a flood, causing commuters to remain held up in the gridlock for several hours.

They, therefore, called on the Federal Government to urgently commence repairs before another raining season begins.

Some community leaders also noted that the problem is being compounded by the lack of proper drainage systems on the expressway.

Speaking to the Federal Director of Works in Abeokuta, Mr Alex Mazoya, in telephone interview, he confirmed the situation noting that the ministry is fully aware.

He, however, assured them that repair works will commence on the roads as soon as funds are available.

Kaduna Govt. Bans FRSC Operations In State Capital

Southern Kaduna: El-Rufai Advocates More Funding For Security AgenciesThe Kaduna State Security Council has banned officials of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC), from operating in the state capital and other urban centres in the state.

The security council also prohibited FRSC personnel from indiscriminately stopping vehicles for inspection in Kaduna town; a situation which has been responsible for avoidable traffic congestion and accidents.

A statement issued by Spokesman to the Governor, Samuel Aruwan, at the end the state security council meeting , advised FRSC personnel to concentrate their operations in ensuring safe travel on highways such as on the Abuja-Kaduna expressway.

The security council explained that the action became necessary after reviewing the trend and noting concerns expressed by citizens over the undue hardship and accidents people have been exposed to at FRSC checkpoints and from reckless tanker drivers.

Also according to the statement, the council took the decision following complaints about acts of disrespect to the public and alleged extortion from motorists.

On the other hand, the council has also demanded that the transporters should stop loading firewood, tomatoes and other goods on top of petrol tankers throughout the state.

They drew the attention of the public to the threats such practices pose to lives and property.

The Security Council, therefore, mandated security agencies to ensure compliance with those directives, as well as impound defaulting tankers.

Cross River Residents Decry Bad Roads

bad-roadsThe Ogoja-Ikom, Calabar-Itu and Calabar-Ikang roads are the three major Federal Government roads in Cross River state built over thirty years ago and have contributed significantly to the growth of the nation’s economy.

It is estimated that over 1000 loaded trucks of commodities ply the roads on daily basis for commercial purposes.

The roads however, have in recent times become shadows of their own due to lack of proper maintenance leading to untold hardship.

Residents of Cross River State, South South Nigeria are seeking the attention of the Federal Government for a reconstruction of its dilapidated roads as their survival directly or indirectly depends on them.

As another electioneering year draws closer, it is expected that, relevant authorities will wake up to their duties of providing the people with adequate infrastructures to make life meaningful for them

Bad Roads: Agency Says It’s On Top Of Situation

The Director General, Nigerian Building and Road Research Institute (NBRRI), Prof Danladi Matawal has assured Nigerians that his agency is up to the task as regards finding lasting solutions to bad roads in the country.

Speaking on this edition of Question Time, he explained that the agency’s mandate is to conduct integrated research and development activities into several aspects of the construction industry.

The agency has been carrying out underground work in Abuja and Lagos in order to formulate models of traffic characteristics which will be used in research in other states of the country.

“We have research staff in Ota, who has been placed to assess and give us insight into traffic characteristics in Lagos.”

The agency has also approved research on Enugu-Port Harcourt expressway to look at traffic, pavement situation and create models to use in recommending a number of measures to alleviate failure of pavements.

“We are taking the bull by the horn on the issue of road pavement failure,” he said.

He however complained of inadequate funding which caused the agency setbacks in 2011. “The resource was so small; we couldn’t meet most of our plans” he said.

The DG  attributed the low funding to “lack of appreciation for research”.

Analyst Blames Strikes In Nigeria On Government’s Irresponsibility

The Executive Director of Grassroots Watch, Adeola Soetan has said that the irresponsibility of the Federal Government was what caused the series of industrial actions in Nigeria.

Mr Soetan, who was a guest on Channels Television’s programme, Sunrise Daily, said that strikes by workers or union is recognised legitimately all over the world and that no labour leader will take the action as an option of first choice.

Though the Nigeria Union of Petroleum and Natural Gas Workers (NUPENG) just called off a three-day warning strike several other employee of the government including teachers in the Universities and Polytechnics have down tools owing to unresolved disagreements.

Mr Soetan said for any union to embark on a strike, it simply shows the irresponsibility on the part of its employer because the action is not something easy to plan.

He said other options would have been considered to reach a compromise with the government, hence his reason for hinting that no labour leader would resort to strike action as an option of first choice.

He said, “It shows total irresponsibility on the part of government, because strike is not easy to plan, it’s not a child’s play.

“For any labour leader, they want an option of least cost because to plan a strike action, you hold meetings, organise campaigns, meet up with management and government, you also have to get support and legitimacy from all you councils at different levels.”

Watch interview for more details.

18 people killed in Abuja-Lokojo Expressway bus crash

At least 18 people died when two buses collided head-on Wednesday along the Abuja-Lokoja Highway.

Nine others sustained serious injuries, a spokesperson of the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) said.

The accident happened along the Kwali-Gwagwalada road early on Wednesday, when a public bus lost control and rammed into another bus travelling in the opposite direction.

All but one of the 18 passengers of the first bus, including the driver, died on the spot.

A total of 96 people, including 10 children, were involved in the crash.

The FRSC has urged Nigerian motorists to avoid unnecessary night journeys.

The Kwali-Gwagwalada-Lokoja route, linking the north to the rest of the country, is considered particularly dangerous as many people lose their lives here each year.

The road is being expanded to make it safer, but construction work has dragged on for years.

F.G. flags off construction of N5.2 billion Isinweke-Onicha Uboma-Imo River road

Reprieve has come for the agrarian community of Isinweke in Ihitte Uboma local government area of Imo state as the Federal Government through the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) has flagged off the construction of 5.2 billion naira 16.7 kilometer Isinweke-Onicha Uboma- Imo river road which has remained dilapidated for the past 30 years.

While flagging off the commencement of the road project on behalf of the Federal Government in Isinweke- Akata community in Ihitte Uboma, the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives; Honorable  Emeka Ihedioha in company of the managing director of the Niger Delta Development Commission;  Chris Oboh said the road project is part of the NDDC regional project in promoting rural development in the Niger Delta, that the importance of the road when completed cannot be over-emphasized especially due to the many agricultural potentials of the Ihitte Uboma people as the food basket of the state and when completed, will go a long way to enhance the easy transportation of agricultural products and food products from Ihitte Uboma to other parts of the states and other south east states as the road remains a major link to Abia and Enugu states.

Ihitte Uboma local government area of Imo state is known to be one of the food basket of Imo state with its rich cultivation and production of cash and food crops like rice, cassava palm oil amongst others.

One major problem faced by the people of the area over the years is that of bad roads which has deterred the people from transporting most of their agricultural products within and outside the state. Indigenes of the area lamented severally over the bad state of the road which has remained like that for many years running.

However, their plea might have gotten to the appropriate authorities, as the Federal Government through the NDDC approved 5.2 billion for the commencement of road construction.

While addressing the people of the community, the Deputy Speaker of House of Representatives; Honorable Emeka Ihedioha commended the Federal Government and the NDDC for their decision to take on the project in a time like this.

He said further that the road project will promote the economic activities in the area as well as provide job opportunities for unemployed youths in the area. He called on the people to cooperate with the contractors in order to speed up the road project since the contractors have been mobilized.

Indigenes of the area noted that the road project will go a long way to enhance the standard of living of the people living in the area; they however thanked the Federal Government and the NDDC for the good gesture of remembering the people of the area.

The 16.7 kilometer road which is expected to be completed within 3 years will have 4 bridges and 6 culverts and it is hoped that after completion, it will facilitate the easy transportation of food and agricultural products between Imo, Abia and Enugu states.