Umahi warns expatriate contractors against substandard jobs

2 months ago
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The Minister of Works, Dave Umahi, has warned indigenous and expatriate contractors engaged in the construction of road projects across the country against substandard jobs.

The minister gave the warning in Abuja at a meeting with contractors handling federal roads, warning that the sub-standard work was no longer acceptable.

Umahi said most of the roads currently being constructed in the country could not last seven years after construction.

He frowned at how contractors cheat Nigerians in the materials they use to construct roads in the country.

“Our expatriate contractors, this cannot happen in any of your countries, it cannot.

“Anywhere there is a project going on, the first thing that is done is the convenience of the people. I feel we are being taken for a ride, and we are being taken for granted.

You feel you are doing us a favour, you are not doing us a favour, this is business, and this attitude must stop,” he said

He also decried the discomfort and pains Nigerians face while travelling on federal roads, saying he had to feel their pains when he travelled to Edo from Abuja.

He said the contractors constantly increase the cost of projects and cheat the country through contract variation and the use of asphalt materials, which are subject to the international price of crude oil.

According to him, there is no project being constructed right now in Nigeria that is going to last for seven years.

“The question is, are we going to be maintaining or reconstructing our roads after every 10 years?

“That is what we have been doing. I travelled from Abuja to Benin City through Lokoja, all the stretches of the road are on contract, and ongoing, this is through the policy of the last administration but how much of the roads are motorable?

“I travelled through the roads myself and I shed tears for the kind of pain our people are going through.

“I spent 14 hours on the road having started my journey at 10am and got to Benin City at 2pm the next day and I was very happy I experienced the pains.

“President Tinubu said I must travel through all the projects so that I will brief him on my experience and tell him the truth,” he said

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