Delta State Governor, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa

By Onome Oghenetega

The governor of Delta State, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa says the Federal Government needs to urgently act on the state of federal roads across the country particularly in the Delta before they become overwhelming.

Okowa, however, advised the government at the central to re-assess all roads constructed over 20 years ago with a view to reconstructing failed ones.

The governor stated this while inspecting construction works on the failed portions of the Benin/Warri road being reconstructed by the state government on Sunday.

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Okowa said the spate at which federal roads were failing, there is need for the federal government to swiftly intervene to save commuters the hardship they go through in most roads across the country.

He added that most of the roads were aging thus there was need for total reassessment and prompt action.

The governor accompanied by members of the State Executive Council posited that “if the Federal Government fails to act fast, I am afraid we are going to be overwhelmed one day by the magnitude of failed roads.”

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 Okowa, who was conducted round the failed areas of the road by the Commissioner for Works, Mr James Auguye, told newsmen that his administration was intervening on deplorable federal roads because they were critical infrastructure for the socio-economic development of the state and for those plying the roads to other parts of the country.

“We are very much aware that this is a federal road. We complained to the Federal Government but they said it was not in the budget, and gave us the approval to intervene.

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“This road and others are very important, especially to our people who are road users. It was not passable before now, but you can see that within a period of one week, the contractor handling the project has opened one side of the road”, he stated.

He, however,  noted that the state government would approach the State House of Assembly for the funds through a supplementary budget as the roads intervention was an emergency

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Aside Benin-Warri highway, the state government is also rehabilitating failed sections of Benin-Onitsha road, especially at the Asaba end of River Niger Bridge and Agbor-Abraka-Eku road.

The Commissioner for Information, Mr Charles Aniagwu, had told the media on Tuesday that the intervention on the roads would cost over N1 billion.


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