N350bn package: Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, 2nd Niger Bridge to benefit

Minister of finance, Kemi Adeosun

The Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, the 2nd Niger Bridge, and the Enugu-Port Harcourt Road rank top of the list of the projects to be funded with the Federal Government’s N350bn stimulus fund, our correspondent has learnt.

The projects are among the ones abandoned by contractors due to a lack of money.

In the Federal Capital Territory, for instance, virtually all the construction sites have been abandoned.

For instance, contractors such as Julius Berger, CCECC and Dantata & Sawoe have stopped work on project sites such as the Lugbe-Airport road, the bridge linking Byazhim and Kubwa market, as well as the major bridge linking the central business district with Nyanya.

The Minister of Finance, Mrs. Kemi Adeosun, had while speaking after the National Economic Council retreat chaired by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo said the Federal Government had resolved to inject N350bn into the economy to stabilise it.

However, findings by our correspondent on Tuesday revealed that most of the projects that would benefit from the initial release of the fund would go for the projects abandoned having the capacity create jobs on a large scale.

A top official in the Budget Office confided in our correspondent that some of the projects being considered are the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, the Enugu Port Harcourt Road and the 2nd Niger Bridge.

The construction of the Kano-Maiduguri Road, which has a budgetary allocation of N16bn, the Abuja-Lokoja Road (N10bn), and the Apapa-Oshodi Road (N5bn) are also expected to benefit from the fund.

Others are the Sokoto-Kontagora Road (N4bn), the Ilorin-Jebba Road (N6bn), and the Itu-Ikot-Ekpene Road (N6bn).

Apart from road projects, the source said the government would be channeling funds into other infrastructure projects in the housing and power sector.

He said, “We all know that we are facing challenging times, and the government wants to use the 2016 budget as a solution to our economic problems, especially the 30 per cent capital allocation component in the budget.

“In doing so, some of the abandoned projects, which could create jobs, will benefit from the N350bn to be released within the next few months.

“Some of the projects are the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, which has about N50bn allocated for it in the budget, and the 2nd Niger Bridge, which has an allocation of about N17bn.

“Other key sectors of the economy, particularly the housing and power sector will also benefit from the fund.”

Adeosun had said for contractors to benefit from the fund, they must show proof of the number of Nigerians that would be re-engaged.

Adeosun said, “From the ministry of finance, in anticipation of the approval of the budget, we have virtually lined up about N350bn, which we will pump into the economy.”


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