The Federal Government has commenced work on the reconstruction of the 18-km Eleme Junction – Trailer Park section of the East-West Road in Rivers State barely two weeks after the Minister of Works, Dave Umahi, visited the site.
Umahi had promised that work on the project would soon be commenced. But many stakeholders had ignored him because of past promises by the Federal Government to reconstruct that road. He said the sum of N33 billion had been released for the project.
Piling work is currently going on at Trailer Park area, where it is said that a flyover will be constructed to connect the road to the Onne Ports complex.
The area covering both lanes of the road has been cleared and equipment were seen on Tuesday removing the top layers of the soil. The project is being executed by Reynolds Construction Company Limited, RCC.
Although job for is localised around the Trailer Park end, workers on site told the magazine that the long awaited reconstruction project has begun in earnest.
For many years, users of that section of the road had cried out to the Federal Government to reconstruct the road after it failed and had been causing a lot of casualties and business failure.
Articulated vehicles conveying goods from Onne Ports and other heavy duty vehicles collapsed every day on the road, causing hold ups and untold hardships to people around the area and travellers using the route to go to Akwa Ibom and Cross River.
Several delegations have been led by the Rivers State Government to the presidency while many resolutions had been passed by the National Assembly to call for the reconstruction of the road.
Two years ago, youths from Eleme Local Government Area blocked the road for one week to press for the reconstruction of the road. They only withdrew after the minister of Niger Delta Affairs then, Godswill Akpabio, promised that work would commence immediately after payment of damages to owners of developed property on the project’s right of way.
But that was the end of the game. After N2.5 billion was released to pay landlords of property on the right of way. All the equipment mobilised for the project were withdrawn from site and the road went from bad to worse.
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