Ogun State government said on Monday that the reconstruction of Abeokuta-Ota-Lagos Expressway is being delayed because the Federal Government is yet to formally hand over the road project to it.
The Special Adviser to Governor Dapo Abiodun on Media, Mr. Kayode Akinmade, stated this in Abeokuta.
Akinmade said the development arose because Ogun State Government is still waiting for final approval of the concessioning of the road from the Federal Government.
Recalled that the Minister of Works, David Umahi, announced in October last year, during a briefing after the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting that the Federal Government had finally concessioned the strategic road to the Ogun State Government to reconstruct after several efforts made to that effect by the Governor Dapo Abiodun-led administration.
The reconstruction was to be carried out under the Highway Development and Management Initiative (HDMI), with the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) and the Federal Ministry of Finance to be involved in the process.
Akinmade, said although, there is a presidential approval for the concessioning, there is no EXTRACT from the Federal Executive Council (FEC) approving the concessioning.
According to Akinmade, the procedure for the concessioning is not complete without FEC’s EXTRACT paper.
He noted that after deliberation and approval, the FEC will issue an extract from the office of the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), transferring the road to the Ogun State Government.
The Special Adviser said that the Ogun State Government is waiting anxiously for the FEC’s nod to proceed with the project.
He added that the FEC Extract is needed to raise funds for the project and also discuss with investors.
Commissioner for Works, Engr. Ade Akinsanya had earlier said the state administration had been providing palliatives to make the roughly 70km road manageable for motorists.
“Ogun State has been rehabilitating the road since 2019.
“We keep doing palliative works because the governor is always concerned about the suffering being experienced by the people.
“He remains concerned about the deplorable state of the road until he got what he wanted from the federal government.
“With the transfer done now, we are happy and ready to immediately take over the project and turn around the fortunes of the road.
“It’s what we’ve been looking for, praying for since we came on board.
“We will take over immediately, subject to paperwork between us and the federal ministry,” he had said.