BY GABRIEL ENOGHOLASE
BENIN – OWING to the dilapidation of critical economic highways belonging to the federal government across the country, the Presidency has directed the Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA) to aggressively maintained the highways with a view to achieving ” near zero pothole” tolerance before December, 2012.
Zonal Coordinator South – South Zone 11 (SS 11) of FERMA, Engr. Jimoh Kajogbola who disclosed this weekend while flagging-off newly awarded contracts for road maintenance in the Zone at Illah, Delta State along the Benin-Asaba-Onitsha dual carriage way, said that maintenance of roads that were not under contract by the Federal Ministry of Works (Highways Department) would be executed through contracts and direct labour between now and end of November, 2012.
Meanwhile, FERMA Executive Director in charge of Road Maintenance Services, Alhaji Garuba Mubi who also witnessed the flag-off ceremony, disclosed that the agency has awarded over fifty major road contacts and no less than one hundred emergency road contracts to ensure that the December deadline given by the Presidency was realized.
According to him, “we are going for operation zero potholes and that will engage virtually the whole management. All of us will be involved; we are also going to be part of inspection of the contracts executed all over the nation up to December, 2012. We are going to ensure that the contractors are done according to FERMA specifications and on schedule”.
“We are also going to ensure that the potholes are minimized or new zero before December 2012. What we are begging essentially is for the National Assembly to graciously support Mr. President and consider the case of road maintenance and the time of work with the budget up to March next year”.
Also speaking at the ceremony, the representative of the Managing Director of FERMA and Executive Director, Planning and Engineering Services, Alhaji Hassan Muhammed, while disclosing that the agency was fully equipped for the job with over forty-one Asphalt producing plants across the country, said that contractors were fully mobilized for the execution of the contracts and advised them to take advantage of the receding rains.
Engr. Kajogbola disclosed that operations of the newly awarded contracts were delayed due to heavy rains that was just subsiding, which he said made construction materials too wet and unfit for permanent works to be carried out, even as he charged the contractors to and Supervisors of their responsibilities to the people of Nigeria.
He listed the contracts in the South-South Zone 11 made up of Edo, Delta and Ondo states to include: General repairs and pavement strengthening of the Benin – Shagamu (Ofusu – Ajabandele dual carriageway) awarded to Messers Sunny Bounce Resources; General maintenance repairs and selected shoulder reinstatement along Benin- Ekpoma – Auchi Road, awarded to Messers Ffordiac and Pavement strengthening and shoulder reinstatement along Ewu- Uromi- Agbor Road, awarded to Messers ARC Marine & Civil Eng Ltd.
Others are:- General Maintenance repairs of Eku – Abraka – Umutu Road awarded to Messers Serena Rock Ltd; General Maintenance repairs and selected shoulder reinstatement of Auchi – Igarra – Ibillo Road, awearded to Messers Hartland Nig. Ltd; Pavement strengthening and shoulder repairs along Amukpe – Eku- Agbor Road awarded to Messers Uniglobe; General Maintenance repairs and selected shoulder reinstatement of iruekpen-Uzebba-Ifon Road, awarded to Messers Amitech Interglobe; General maintenance repairs and selected shoulder reinstatement along Auchi-Okene Road awarded to messers Harvey Ltd and Major maintenance repairs and provision of drainage structure along Kwale- Ebedei- Umutu Road awarded to Messers Serena Rock Ltd.