Kidnapping, ritual killing, robbery hamper road projects in Kogi

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Kidnapping, ritual killing and armed robbery have hampered the progress of some ongoing road construction projects in Kogi state, the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports.

Mr Kajogbola –Jimoh Olatunde, Federal Controller of Works, Kogi state made this known while briefing the Minister of State II for Power, Works and Housing, Suleiman Zarma in Kogi.

The minister was on inspection tour to access the ongoing roads, housing and power projects in the state.

Olatunde noted that these challenges have affected the dualisation of Lokoja-Benin road, section 1, phases 1 and II (Obajana Junction-Okene), C/No. 6135.

The project which is being handled by M/s CGC Nigeria Ltd with contract sum of N30.5 billion has initial date of award as Dec. 3, 2012 but revised to October 2014.

Stating the site challenges, he noted that there were serious security challenges in and around Lokoja and Okene towns which included kidnapping, killing and armed robbery.

“The contractor is requesting for protection for her staff, plant and equipment. The expatriates staff is being kept in Abuja, they occasionally go to site under very tight security.

“This is affecting the construction of sensitive part of this project like bridges.

Another location being affected by these challenges was the rehabilitation of Ilorin-Kabba-Obajana road, Section II (Egbe-Kabba) being handled by CGC Nigeria Ltd.

According to the controller, the contractor made appreciable progress at the commencement of the project in 2014.

He noted that due to the security challenges, the contractor has suspended all sites activities since February 2015.

“The contractor was briefly on site in November 2017 to undertake the construction of concrete lined drains treating lives of Ayietoro Gbede community members.

“Also she has indicated its preparedness to remobilize fully to site if security situation improves.

The rehabilitation of Okene-Ajeokuta-Itobe road, C/No 6260 was said to have been greatly hampered by serious insecurity particularly armed robbery and kidnapping along project alignment.

According to the controller, also the representative of engineers in Kogi, the contractor achieved low rate of work due to the challenges and was seeking for protection.

Meanwhile, the minister promised provision of adequate security and fund to facilitate completion of the various projects.

Zarma noted that the Federal Government was committed to deliver infrastructure in the country especially in Kogi state adding that the Okene Bypass which has gone far would be completed in good time. (NAN)

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