The planned closure had been previously postponed in the past. During the week, Nairametrics reported that the Federal Controller of Works in Lagos State, Mr Adedamola Kuti, had ruled out any postponement, stating that such would affect the 2021 final delivery date. The road was previously scheduled for completion in 2017 but paucity of funds and the recent review of the original construction plan caused the delay.
The reconstruction has continued to drag because of contract imbroglio between ex-President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration and Bi-Courtney Consortium. Julius Berger Nigeria Plc and RCC Nigeria Limited were later contracted by the former President. The 127.6 kilometres road is the busiest in Nigeria, with more than 250,000 vehicles plying the road daily.
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The reasons for the recent postponement: The Federal Government is engaging community leaders in the area on the closure so that all parties would cooperate to achieve the desired result. The discussion will enable the government to sensitise the communities and get their cooperation to ensure that the work continued unhindered.
Security concerns: The Ogun State Sector Commander of the Federal Road Safety Corporation, Mr Clement Oladele, has said the military would most likely be involved in securing the area during the reconstruction work.
Oladele said security agencies would camp in the reconstruction areas during the closure to curb any security threat.
“We have commenced deployment of personnel. We know it will be tough during the period because of the nature of the road but we can cushion the challenges if people cooperate with us. We don’t envisage problems. Julius Berger will provide directional signs and flashlights to guide motorists and we have met with the military for security cover.
“We have also negotiated with cattle sellers at the Kara Market to tell them not to sell along the road. All transactions should be carried out within the market during Sallah because that has always been a problem along that road.”