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May 27, 2024

Tinubu: 30 million Nigerians to benefit from Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway

Tinubu: 30 million Nigerians to benefit from Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway

President Bola Tinubu has said the Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway will create direct job opportunities for millions and positively impact over 30 million citizens.

Tinubu made this known on Sunday in Lagos, marking the commencement of the 700-km Lagos-Calabar highway project and several other initiatives to commemorate his first year in office.

During the flag-off ceremony, the president said the project is more than just a road, describing it as a symbol of hope, unity, and prosperity for the country’s people.

He said, “On the next 10 benefits of the Lagos-Calabar coastal highway; during the period of construction, the road will provide direct employment for thousands of people, and indirect employment for tens of thousands of politicians and more. Economic opportunity for millions is being opened.

“It will fast-track the community’s development, It will bring development closer to the people, and give 30 million people improved access to production and marketing centres. You can easily predict a journey, vertically and go along the horizontal line and do the definition of free movement of people.”

The president urged public understanding, especially from those whose properties and livelihoods would be affected by the project.

“I further crave the understanding of the general public, especially those whose properties and sources of livelihood will be impacted by this iconic project. We all make some sacrifices to enable our country to grow,” Tinubu said.

“However, be rest assured that this government is a compassionate government that cares for you and will do the utmost to offer succour, by way of compensation.”

Tinubu also hailed the Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway as a symbol of hope, unity, and prosperity for Nigerians.

He said “This project is more than just a road – it is a symbol of hope, unity, and prosperity. It will connect our communities in nine states, foster trade and commerce, boost tourism, and create new opportunities for generations to come.

“A similar road in Ireland, called the Wild Atlantic Way, 2,600km long is expected to fetch 3bn euros a year in tourism revenues.

“I want to express my gratitude to the team of engineers, workers, and stakeholders who have worked tirelessly to bring us to this point. Your dedication and expertise are the driving force behind the take-off of this project.”

Tinubu underscored safety, sustainability, and social responsibility, urging stakeholders to collaborate for the project’s inclusive benefits and lasting legacy.

He stated “This is not only a legacy project of this administration but a dream come true that will connect some neglected towns and cities along the coastal route. Over time it has been noticed that both Tin Can Island and Apapa ports are becoming shallower thereby limiting the size of ships that can berth at those strategic ports.

“It is pertinent to note that the Lagos State Government in partnership with private investors developed Lekki Deep Sea Port which does not have a link road. It is however obvious that this development will open up businesses and investment along the project corridor.

“The potential of this road is enormous because it will have two spurs which will link up with Sokoto – Badagry Expressway which is under procurement and African Trade Route which connects South East to Cameroon thereby connecting every region of the country.”

Commending the Minister of Works, David Umahi, he highlighted the government’s readiness to welcome private investors’ financial contributions.

He said, “It is worthy to state that the model of EPC+F( Engineering, Procurement, and Construction Plus Finance) which the ministry is adopting is commendable. This sees the Federal Government investing while waiting for private investors to bring on board their counterpart funds.

“I commend the Honourable Minister of Works and the staff of the Ministry who are ensuring that the contractor delivers good quality work.

 “The project is more than a mere road, it is a symbol of hope, unity, and prosperity. It will connect our communities in nine states, foster trade and commerce, boost tourism, and create new opportunities for generations to come.

“To the glory of God and benefit of our people, it is my greatest pleasure to flag off this project and also virtually flag off the spurs about to be procured.

“I also flag off the massive rehabilitation of 330 roads and bridges across the nation. Let the construction begin.”

While acknowledging the dignitaries, Tinubu remarked that everyone desires a well-constructed highway, yet no one wishes for the government to traverse their backyard.

He said, “Everybody, they say, wants a good highway, but nobody wants you to go through their backyard.

“I thank you tremendously, the Chairman of HiTech, Gilbert Chagoury, and my partner, Engineer Roland. We walk together to take the Atlantic and turn a disaster into an asset of great value together.

“We lost weight, we took abuse, but we tamed the Atlantic, we achieved our goals. Here again, we are in it together, thank you, Roland, for being who you are.

‘A particular stakeholder, responsible corporate leader, Aliko Dangote, thank you for understanding your field and investment in Africa, and your incapacity to navigate the stormy water business. Yes, Nigeria is going through a patch, but we depend on you to continue doing this, so that other people will emulate and copy your example, thank you, Aliko.”