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Commuters blast contractors over federal roads in S-East

By Dennis Agbo

ABAKALIKI—USERS of different Federal Government roads in the South East geo-political zone, have cried out over the poor handling of roads by the contractors awarded the roads in the area.

Meanwhile, the road users have called on the Federal Ministry of Works to monitor the execution of the contracts, to achieve value for  tax payers’ money.

The roads in question include the Enugu-Onistsha dual carriageway, the Abakaliki-Afikpo Road, Nkalagu-Nsukka Road and Enugu-Port Harcourt Road.

Whereas the people said they rejoiced with the Federal Government for heeding to their cries, at last by awarding the roads for constructions, they expressed dissatisfactions with the speed and quality of the work being carried out by the contractors handling the major roads.

At Onueke in Ebonyi State, a top police officer, who pleaded anonymity alleged that the company, handling part of the Abakaliki-Afikpo Road, was not reconstructing the road, but was coating tars on the surface of the old road without scraping the perforated road. “It is just because I am a public servant, I would have stopped them from the work they are doing. They  left the very bad portions  and are putting coal tars on the surface of the other portions. Can you imagine this?” the cop lamented before newsmen.

In Enugu, the residents alleged that the company handling the right wing of the Enugu-Onitsha Road, scrapped the lane before Christmas and left it unusable, causing vehicular hold-up, especially for the Abakpa and Trans-Ekulu residents, who now struggle on the left wing of the road with trailers traveling from the North and Onitsha to Port-Harcourt and Abakaliki on a daily basis.

At the Ugwu Onyeama Hill, motorists complained that despite the erosion menace at the coal mine area, the construction company had left the place more terrifying than it was with its excavations, without corresponding repairs.

When our reporter travelled on the Ugwoba-Awka-Onitsha axis, weekend, commuters were very angry with the state of the road, with some cursing the contractor executing the Enugu-Anambra border area, saying that the drainage under construction was being done with substandard material.

“I am afraid that with this kind of flexible iron they are using for this drainage, when the rains come, erosion will just sweep everything away,” said a commuter.

Reports from Isi-Uzo have it that the contractor handling  the Nkalagu-Nsukka Road has started landing equipment for construction but it was observed that the equipment were very old, while work on the Enugu-Port Harcourt Road has been very sluggish with the same coating of old tars on the Enugu end of the road.


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