By Olasunkanmi Akoni
LAGOS — THE Senate has set up a committee to investigate a fresh alert following a motion on the imminent collapse of the Third Mainland Bridge in Lagos.
The committee made of Senate committee on Works and officials of the Federal Ministry of Works, is expected to submit its report back to the house in two weeks.
Senator Gbenga Ashafa, representing Lagos East Senatorial District, had last week, in a motion co-sponsored by 55 other Senators sought for an investigation to ascertain the true state of the Third Mainland Bridge in Lagos.
This followed a report by Professor JHT Kim, Head of The Concrete Structural Engineering Laboratory, Yousei University, Seoul Korea, who came on research in December 2012 and conducted an underwater examination of the structures holding the bridge and reported that the damages to the structure was worse than what he had been briefed.
Ashafa, while commenting on the development at briefing in Lagos, yesterday, said the setting up of the committee was for an immediate independent investigation into the report with a view of averting calamity by finding out the true state of the bridge and make recommendations.
According to him: “A report produced by a company experienced in underwater surveys indicated that the underwater metal casing housing the concrete piles on which the bridge stands have rusted and this accounts for the vibration experienced in some portions of the bridge.
“This led to the closure of the bridge for repairs between 7th July and 30th October 2012 by the Federal Ministry of Works.”
He said Professor Kim’s report indicated that there was progressive steel deterioration in about 1,318 foundation piles and that there was extensive reinforcement bar deterioration in eight piles.
Ashafa lamented that the repair works done during the last quarter of 2012 by the Ministry of Works, were mere window dressing on the expansion joints of which reports had confirmed that some parts had since become disjointed.
The senator said: “The implication is that, the Third Mainland Bridge between Adeniji Adele, Adekunle and Oworonshoki ends could collapse and therefore require comprehensive works to be carried out on the foundation immediately.”