OPERATION ZERO POTHOLES: FEDERAL GOVERNMENT PARTNERS KOGI FOR FLOW OF TRAFFIC IN THE YULETIDE SEASON
BY ABAH BENJAMIN ENEOJOH
The Federal Controller of Works Kogi State, Engr Kojogbola J. Olatunde has announced the intention of the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing to partner with Kogi State Ministry of Works to deliver on the “Operation Zero Potholes” agenda of His Excellency Alhaji Yahaya Bello in this Yuletide season.
Engr Kojogbola made this known today in Lokoja while receiving delegation of the Honorable Commissioner for Works and Housing, Engr Abubakar S. Ohere, led by the Head of Civil Department, Engr Simon Oguche.
Earlier Engr Oguche revealed that his Team was here according to the directive of the Honorable Commissioner for Works and Housing, Engr Abubakar Ohere to ascertain the condition of Highways and work progress in the State as the Christmas period is fast approaching. “Most especially work progress on Murtala Bridge in Janata.” He added.
Oguche further reiterated that the passion of Governor Yahaya Bello to deliver on the ” Let’s Do More” mantra on road infrastructures in the State is keenly driving us in the State Ministry of Works and Housing.
Recall that Governor Yahaya Bello on a working visit to the site at Janata expressed dismay when he was informed that the removal of surface asphalt on the Murtala Bridge has taken three months without substantial progress on work done
The Governor after making his enquiry from site Engineers however, assured that the Federal Government would give immediate attention to the road as he would convey the slow pace of work to the respective quarters.
Responding, Engr Kojogbola said he is working assiduously to make sure there would be no Pothole on all the Federal Highways in the State before the Yuletide season.
He further hinted that all the flash points in the State are currently receiving serious attention including the Jamata Bridge.
” Serious work is ongoing at Felele road, even on Ajaokuta road, we have commenced asphalt overlay and on Lokoja-Ganaja road contractors have been mobilized to site with three months duration to complete”
Kojogbola also assured that Jamata Bridge Will be opened in the festive period for free flow of traffic.
Asked whether the section1of Ganaja road will be done before the festive period, the controller said the particular place that the road was over-flown by water to opposite side was the section 1 and because the contractor was not ready to commence his job, the contract was revoked and a new contractor will commence work soon.
The controller further said “seeing the effort of both the State Governor and the Honorable Commissioner for Works, we will also join the “operation zero Potholes” agenda of the state”
At Jamata, the representative of the contractor on site, Engr Martins Adeyinka noted that his job is not just scarification of asphaltic wearing course but total overhauling of the Bridge which will take two years before completion.
Engr Martins hinted that for the sake of the festive period, his Company is working both day and night to make all the road users happy, noting that before the end of the first week of December, everybody will have smooth drive on the the both Lanes of the road.
Martins revealed that the pressure from the road users would not make him do substandard job, stressing that the installation of Expansion Joint and the abutment alone will take alot of time but because of the Yuletide season “we shall extend all of that to the month January for free traffic flow on the both sides of the road”
In the same vein, at Gitto Project site in Felele, The project Director Engr Frank Rizzo also revealed his work plan and the timeline for this festive period.
He promised to make the road passable on both Lanes for the travellers in this Yuletide season.
Engr Rizzo apologized for his slowness on the job but attributed the cause to the presence of underground water which was later stabilized by addition of sharp sand.
He assured the Team that the road will be opened to traffic on both sides with upto four kilometers asphalt overlay before the second week of December.
Finally, the Team Leader, Engineer Oguche charged the contractors to be more committed to their jobs stressing that the only thing that is expected of them is quick and thorough job that could make an accident free road in this festive period.