Contractors for the rehabilitation of three major depots for petroleum products at Diko, in Minna, Niger state; Gusau in the North West and Ibadan in Oyo state, South West, have been mobilized to site, Minister of Power, Works and Steel, Babatunde Fashola, has disclosed.
He said this in a keynote address at the 4th quadrennial delegates conference of the petroleum tanker drivers branch of National Unon of Petroleum and Natural Gas (NUPENG).
The minister however, did not give details of the contract, but declared that works had begun to refix the strategic fuel depot.
“Those of you who ply the Suleja-Minna Highway where there are strategic NNPC Depots at Minna and the PPMC Depot at Diko, will now acknowledge that the contractor is back to work,” he said in the address made available to New Telegraph.
He said: “Those of you who take products from the NNPC Depot at Gusau will acknowledge that our contractor is now back to work after years of absence due to lack of payment for work done on the Zaria-Gusau-Sokoto Road.
“Those of you who use the NNPC Depot in Ibadan will also now acknowledge that our contractor is back to work on the Ibadan-Abeokuta Highway.”
The proper place to start, the minister said, is the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan launched by President Muhammadu Buhari, in which he identified Energy Sufficiency and Infrastructure Development as critical action points.
“These action points are not accidental; on the contrary, they reveal a clear thinking and understanding of what must be done to rebuild our economy and underline the interconnectivity between availability of quality infrastructure and the delivery of energy from petroleum products to drive our economy,” he said .
“But it is one thing to have a plan, and yet another thing to commit to a faithful implementation of that plan.
“If you think this is not important, let me remind you that in 2015, only N18 billion was budgeted for all Nigerian roads in the Ministry of Works. Only N9billion was funded at the time, when Nigeria’s oil was selling at close to $100 per barrel. This was at the time of the Transformation Agenda, when commitment fell significantly behind stated objectives.”
What has changed under the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP), he explained, “is that the Buhari Government has committed close to N300billion to roads, and funded about N260billion at a time when oil prices are manifestly below the 2015 figures.
“So, if people ask you what change means, please tell them it means doing more with less. What are the results of this change?
“The results mean reduced journey times on the sections of roads where work has now resumed.
“Those of you who ply Ilorin-Jebba will now admit that from spending seven days on that road, you now spend less time while works are rapidly progressing, not only on the road but also in the Emergency Repairs on the Tatabu Bridge, which suddenly collapsed as a result of massive rainfall, flooding and lack of maintenance.
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