The federal government abandoned federal roads in Plateau.
The Federal Government owes Plateau State N4.8 billion for federal roads in Plateau that the state government helped repair, a commissioner has said.
The Plateau State Commissioner of Works, Chris Hassan, said on Wednesday, that for the past six years, the failure of the federal government to maintain its roads in Plateau, and the terrible condition of the roads, made the state government to carry out the repairs.
Mr. Hassan stated this on Wednesday in Jos, at the state secretariat during a press conference on the two-day tour of road projects under construction in the state.
“None of the federal roads constructed in plateau have been compensated,” the commissioner said.
He said the Governor Jonah Jang administration had in the past six years constructed 25 roads (federal and state owned) covering about 80 kilometres. He said the administration has spent N95 billion on the road projects.
Speaking on the quality of road projects being constructed in the state, Mr. Hassan said all the contractors were issued with government’s expected standard of roads.
The commissioner had threatened to sanction contractors who fail to deliver contracts awarded them within government specifications.
Mr. Hassan issued the threat earlier at the end of a tour of projects within Southern and Central Plateau on Monday
“After the inspection tour, we shall write our report; and our recommendation will be based on what we have seen.
“Anyone who performs below standard will be sanctioned accordingly; we have done such in the past, and are still going to do it. Any contractor that performs below expectation will be sanctioned,” he said.
The commissioner said the Jang administration was determined to complete all ongoing projects before handing over to another administration on May 29, 2015.
“Government is determined to commission all her projects by April next year,” he said.
A PREMIUM TIMES correspondent on the monitoring team observed that many newly constructed roads at both Southern and Central Plateau state where poorly done.
Some contractors, particularly indigenous contractors, seemed to have abandoned the projects, while others who are still on site were not carrying out the jobs within government specifications.
The management of Haijat Constructing Company, handling a 33 kilometre Gunji Shiwer road in Kanke Local Government Area of Central Plateau is believed to have gone into hiding following its failure to complete its project as scheduled.
According to the resident engineer in the Plateau Ministry of Works, Alex Plangnang, the 33 kilometre road was awarded since in 2008, to be completed within 24 months. It is yet to be completed 6 years later.
“All road constructions awarded the same period with the Gunji Shiwer road have since been completed and commissioned,” Mr. Plangnang said.
The engineer said though the state government had fully paid the supervisor, the construction work on the road had only been 65 per cent completed.
Experts who were also on the tour of the road projects, but pleaded not to be named, said if the road was not completed by this year’s raining season, the work done so far on the road would be wash away by rain.
While staff of Haijat had deserted the project site, residents of the area appealed for quick completion of the road.
Similarly, a 14.5 kilometre Panskshin Langkang road is yet to be completed by Function Solid Construction Company three years after commencement.
A resident of the area, Jonathan Musa, alleged that the construction company could not complete the road due to non-engagement of locals as laborers to speed up the work.
“The workers on site are few; a job that should ordinarily take 3 days was being done in two weeks. Another factor for the delay is that the company does not pay labourers good sum, as a result, a few that were earlier engaged as labourers are being owed,” he said.
However, the site engineer of the project, a Mr. Haleet, said the construction of the road was 80 per cent done.
“The job is 80 per cent completed; what is delaying our work is the construction of the bridge as you can see.
Although labourers were seen at the project site working, Mr. Musa alleged that the workers only resumed on Saturday, after a long period off; and possibly because the management knew of the inspection.
Also, some contractors handling road projects at security prone areas, particularly in Riyom Local Government said their workers risked being attacked. They demanded adequate security to continue with the projects.
Meanwhile, many contractors handling road projects within the state capital, Jos, complained that the delay in execution of the jobs was due to non-compensation for buildings and other property of residents, set for demolition, by the state government.
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