The minister’s directive was at the behest of the outcry by commuters plying the road who have been lamenting that the condition of the road has made it impossible for goods to be conveyed from one place to the other.
In a statement by the Deputy Director, Press and Public Relations, Mr. Boade Akinola, in Abuja on Tuesday, the minister noted that the inclement weather condition is adversely affecting the progress of work on the ongoing 124.8km thereby making the road unmotorable especially between Km 45 – 50 km to articulated vehicles and trailers conveying petroleum products and others.
Fashola, however, urged the contractor to concentrate efforts on executing the worst Fadama section of the road Km 45- 50 where a lot of earthworks is required, in order to further alleviate the pains of commuters.
He further ordered the vacation of trucks on road to allow remediation to continue.
The statement said: “The Ministry has contacted the leadership of the Union of Truck Owners and Operators to appeal to their drivers to vacate the road to allow the contractor access to the worksite.
“The Minister also appeals to Niger State Government to reconsider the decision to close Bida – Minna and Lapai -Paiko roads to articulated vehicles while construction is equally going.”
Fashola explained further that the restriction of articulated vehicles from using Bida- Minna road by the Niger State Government diverted most of the Lagos and Abuja bound articulated vehicles to Lambata – Lapai – Bida road, adding that this has increased the volume of traffic and hampers smooth operations by contractors at site causing slow progress of work.
The contract was awarded in May 2018 and 26.7km out of 124.8km has been completed.
The Minister reiterated the commitment of the Federal Government to continue to respond to the needs of the people, even as infrastructure development is given top priority.
He sympathized with all who have been adversely impacted by the development and urged them to remain hopeful as help is on the way.