Governor of Anambra State, Professor Chukwuma Charles Soludo has said that all federal roads in the state have failed and are begging the attention of the federal government.
Governor Soludo was speaking at the Governor’s Lodge, Amawbia when the Minister of Works and Housing, Engr. Dave Umahi paid him a courtesy visit.
The Governor stated that two billion naira was approved for repairs of a section of Onitsha-Owerri Road. He lamented the collapse of the entire road
He added that this is the scenario playing out in most federal roads across the state, due to poor maintenance.
He said the Onitsha-Owerri road is very strategic due to the numerous states in the South that the road is linked to, stressing that the second Niger bridge may not be fully utilized if the road is left in that deplorable state.
“In Anambra West, the road leading to Idah, Kogi state, there’s a direct route from Nzam to Lokoja. When that is constructed, travelling from Anambra to Abuja will be around 3 hours. That is a major game changing project that is worth venturing into.
“With you, Engr. Umahi in office, you are a perfect round peg in a round hole. Please keep showing your leadership.
“Once we rethink the framework for delivery of infrastructure, Nigeria will be a totally different place. Nigeria is a federation. You cannot stay in your state, clap with one hand and expect noise. You need the other hand which is the federal government, for things to work” Soludo remarked.
Governor Soludo urged the Federal Government to work with state governments to develop a more efficient framework for delivering road infrastructure.
He appreciated President Bola Tinubu for appointing Engr. Umahi as his Works Minister.
“In politics you don’t get what you deserve but what you bargain for with votes. Giving the totality of votes we contributed from South East and looking at the ministerial portfolios, we may not have the basis to begin to demand for “juicy” portfolios but the President graciously gave us one of our finest and best, one of the few engineers who pioneered concrete pavement as current standard for road construction.
“What you said about the possibility of coming back again for us to move around in Anambra State will be fantastic because we have fundamental challenges on road infrastructure and especially how it’s delivered by the Federal Government.
“The Federal Government is staying in Abuja and trying to award road contracts in all nooks and crannies of the country. Sincerely speaking, the entire Federal roads are all gone. We are currently spending up to 20 billion naira on Federal roads,” Governor Soludo emphasized.
Speaking earlier, the Minister for Works and Housing, Engr. Umahi, bemoaned the challenges posed by erosion in the state.
He expressed his disappointment with the state of the Enugu-Onitsha Road project, saying that he has summoned the contractors and consultants and will be meeting with MTN under Governor Soludo’s chairmanship.
The Minister said that the basic reason for the failure of the road is due to asphalt, and that the introduction of concrete pavement is the best because of poor maintenance culture.
While enumerating the roads currently under construction in the state including the Ukpo, Dunukofia road, the rehabilitation of Ibaji section of Otuocha, Abali Ofieli, Orie Ama Etiti – Umuawulu road, Omor-Umuoikpa, Oba – Nnewi Road and Osammali – Ogwikpele road, Minister Umahi eulogized President Tinubu as a man of justice and equity, who decided in his good mind, to appoint someone from the Southeast to become the minister of works.
Engr. Umahi urged Governor Soludo to continue showing leadership and voicing the truth at all times, utilizing his God-given wisdom and humility to continue in the service of the state and Country.
The Chief Of Staff to Governor, Mr Ernest Ezeajughi, Commissioner for Works, Engr. Ifeanyi Okoma, Chief of Protocol and Deputy Chief of Staff to the Governor, Mr. Chinedu Nwoye, among others joined to welcome the Minister and his guests.