Oladikan Busari, the Northwest Zonal Director, Federal Highways, said on Monday that work on the rehabilitation of the 70 kilometer Hadejai-Kirikasamma-Nguru road in Jigawa, was 80 percent completed.
Busari, who inspected the project, said the first phase which covered 34 kilometres had been completed, while work on phase II, covering 33 kilometres from Kirikassama in Jigawa and Nguru in Yobe was ongoing.
He said: “32 out of the 33 kilometres of the road have been completed, remaining only the auxiliary works and the government unexpectedly wants the contractor to complete his project by the end of this year.
“Completing the rehabilitation work will also put a stop to its review all the time.”
Busari recalled that the project, which was awarded in September 2010 at N7.5 billion, was stalled due to poor funding, until the coming of the Buhari administration.
He said: “The rehabilitation work was awarded since 2010 at the cost of N7.5 billion but is yet to be completed due to poor funding.
“But this administration said the project must continue and released enough fund for its continuation, so as you can see, it has reached about 80% completion stage and by the grace of God, it will soon be completed for all to enjoy.’’
The official explained that the road was of priority to the Federal Government because of the economic activities taking place in the area.
Busari said: “When completed, the road would facilitate easy movement of farm produce and other goods between the two benefiting states, and the nation in general.
“Jigawa and Yobe are agrarian states, so with good road networks, people, particularly farmers, will find it easy to transport their produce to the market with ease.
“It will also enhance other economic activities between the two states and others around them.
“The rehabilitation of the road will also reduce drastically the travel time and cost of vehicle maintenance.
“For instance, due to the dilapidated nature of the road, one will spend between two and three hours from Nguru to Hadejia, a distance of just 70 kilometres, but with this development, in just 40 minutes or there about you cover such distance with ease.”
Also commenting, Fadi Khoury, the Project Manager, Mothercat Limited, the company handling the project, assured that the work would be completed on time.
Khoury said: “Our problem was poor funding, but with the new administration, we are being funded properly, so we are doing our best now to see that we finish in time and do a good and qualitative work.
“What remains now is just something not more than one kilometre; the major work that remained now is the auxiliary works.
“Auxiliary works are works that can be carried out without hindering motorists and other road users from plying the road, such as road shoulder, road furniture, among others.”
He said that majority of the company’s workers on site including engineers, skilled and unskilled labourers were from the local communities in the benefiting states, adding that “even the raw materials we use are sourced locally”.