Concrete roads: Let’s Meet In Court, Umahi Dares Contractors

The Minister of Works, Engr. David Umahi has dared contractors threatening litigation over the ministry’s plan to encourage the use of concrete as an alternative to asphalt for road construction.

Governor Umahi David Of Ebonyi State

He also dismissed speculations that he was pursuing this agenda to pave way for his company to take over contracts.

Umahi stated this during a press briefing he addressed at the conference room of the Ministry on Monday.

The Minister challenged those who were threatening to go to court to go ahead because the Ministry under his leadership has not done anything outside the provisions of the law.

He reiterated the Ministry has always engaged its contractors in line with the general condition of contracts which is the standard practice that all engineers are expected to abide by.

READ ALSO: Umahi Knocks Contractors Over Poor Road Quality

Umahi reminded all that clause 51 of the contractual agreement on road construction empowers the Ministry to direct a contractor to change from asphalt to concrete layout.

The Minister explained that his preference for concrete roads is “due to the fact that it has at least 50 years shelf life, will reduce the pressure on naira, boost the economy of the country and create employment since there are indigenous companies producing cement unlike bitumen that is being imported for asphalt.”

Umahi declared that any contractor who insists on asphalt roads must sign an agreement that it will last for at least thirty years which is the shelf life as Nigerians must get value for their taxes.

He expressed dissatisfaction with the situation where Nigerians are subjected to unnecessary hardship and security risk due to bad roads.

The former Ebonyi State Governor also stated that the idea of a supersonic speed highway was born before his appointment as Minister but that he embraced it because of its benefits.

He disclosed that an advanced engineering company was invited to the Ministry for demonstration which proved that it was viable.

umahi

Umahi said, “It is a fresh technology and it is taking off with the proposed 4th Mainland Bridge and by the famous Shagamu – Ore road, it will link to the seaport that is being done, the Fertiliser company and the refinery. He added that the 4th Mainland Bridge construction is by the Lagos State Government

According to him, no amount of blackmail, threat or intimidation by vested interests will derail him from delivering on the mandate given to him by President Bola Tinubu to drive the renewed hope agenda in the improvement of Nigerian lives through the provision of infrastructure through the Ministry of Works.

He equally denied allegations that he was sidelining the Directors of the Ministry. He explained that he contrary to claims by his detractors, he carries along the Directors and accepts their opinions when they are better than his because his doors remain open to advice and superior arguments.

READ ALSO: Labour Party Cannot Win Presidency In 2023 Governor David Umahi

Umahi stressed that he was aware of the campaign of calumny by some individuals who are not ready to accept the fact that things must be done right and differently.

According to him, some of his detractors were hell-bent on frightening him so that he will not question their wrongdoings.

He revealed that alot of work is not going on in the South East and announced that he will be going there on inspection and whoever has received money for a bad job or an undone job will be compelled to go back and do what he has been paid for.

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Photo Credit: Getty

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