The ongoing reconstruction work on section 1 of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway has progressed up to 40 per cent, the Federal Controller of Works, Lagos, Mr Adedamola Kuti, has said.
The completion date of section 1, also known as the Sagamu-Lagos end of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway project, was last year reviewed up to 2021 to accommodate additions to the original design.
Kuti told journalists on Wednesday during a tour of the road that the contractor, Julius Berger, was on the ground to ensure speedy completion.
“As it is, we are just at about 40 per cent completion,” he said.
He said the Federal Government had set aside special funding under the National Sovereign Investment Fund to ensure that funding would not be a problem.
The controller, however, lamented the impatient attitude of road users, which he said had compounded efforts to achieve free flow of traffic on the road.
According to him, the traffic gridlock witnessed on the road last week, around kilometre 15 popularly called MFM junction was due to impatience and indiscipline.
Kuti said, “This section is the busiest and is already under construction. We understand that there are a lot of Nigerians going about their business but what we are fighting for is that people should not drive against traffic.
“Also, this is a construction zone and nobody should drive at 120km per hour. If people drive at 50km per hour we won’t have any problems on the road.”
The Sector Commander, FRSC Ogun State, Mr Clement Oladele, said indiscipline and age of vehicles plying the road were major problems.
“In Ogun State, most of the 272 deaths recorded last year were at construction zones. Majority of vehicles around such zones are trucks and because most of them are not well maintained, they have the tendency to break down. It happens on other parts of the road but why Lagos-Ibadan Expressway is more challenging is because of the higher number of vehicles,” he said.
Oladele stated that the FRSC had developed a new strategy to charge traffic offenders for dangerous driving.
“This attracts N50, 000 fine and if you are not able to pay after six months, we will approach the Federal High Court and you will forfeit your vehicle,” he added.
The Regional Manager for Julius Berger, Thomas Balzuweit, said a robust system had been put in place to control traffic as a key consideration while executing the project.
“This is an extremely busy part of the road. We are constantly reviewing the situation on this road and the effectiveness of our traffic control system and we will continue to do so. We are going to implement more measures but we need the cooperation of road users, it requires everybody to work together,” he said.