Raymond Ozoji, Awka
Engr. Marcel Ifejiofor, the commissioner for works in Anambra state has attributed the failure of some state roads to the pressure of heavy duty trucks on the roads.
He said that because of the deplorable conditions of some federal roads in the state, the likes of Dangote trucks and other articulated vehicles ply state roads as alternative routes thereby mounting too much pressure on the roads not designed for such capacity vehicles.
Ifejiofor made the observation at an elaborate press conference on the efforts of government on road infrastructure at the conference hall of the ministry of works on Friday.
The commissioner explained that due to the failure of some portions of the Enugu-Onitsha federal highway, most of the trailers and other heavy duty trucks resorted to local internal roads, noting that Amawbia-Enugwu-Agidi-Nawgu-Ekwulu Road failed because Dangote trucks and trailers plied the road as alternative route to the express road.
He said local internal roads were designed for small vehicles and not for big articulated vehicles, stressing that the state government would henceforth mount barricades on internal roads across Anambra to prevent big trucks from plying the roads to avoid further dilapidation.
Ifejiofor further disclosed that because of the extent of road failures in Anambra state, the state government has come up with an intervention plan to ameliorate the situation.
The commissioner explained that the entire Anambra state has been mapped out for road rehabilitation, reinstatement, patching and all what not.
He said Anambra-North and Anambra-South have been shared to 14 competent contractors namely, Infrastructure Development Company (IDC), Breeco Construction Company, New Idea Construction Company, Siva Construction Company, TARMAD Construction, Bachuks Engineering, Nigerian Army Engineers, Philipe Associates International, Kanopeen Construction, Cotabs Construction, Fansee Construction, PCC Engineering and Gwanco Construction respectively, primarily for the urgent interventions on roads before Yuletide sets in while other road projects were still ongoing across the state. He said the contractors were shortlisted because of their records of quality jobs and competence.
The commissioner also stated that the state governor Chief Willie Obiano has directed that road rehabilitation, reinstatement, patching and maintenance for Anambra-Central will be done by the Anambra State Road Maintenance Agency (ARMA) and State Ministry of Works because of the number of roads in the zone.
He said the state government also set up what he disclosed as the Anambra State Design Review Committee to ensure that all road projects and other construction works met acceptable international standards, adding that warning letters have also been issued to contractors breaching contractual obligations.
The commissioner who told journalists that Abia state government has borrowed a leaf from Anambra state in setting up a Design Review Committee, noted that the Nigerian Society of Engineers has equally commended the state government for the idea of a Design Review Committee, adding that the state government reserved the right to institute legal actions on erring construction firms even though he mentioned that government has already terminated the contracts of three contractors over shoddy jobs.