6th September, 2010
The Special Adviser to Governor Babatunde Fashola on Works and Infrastrucure, Engr. GaniuÂ Johnson, has expressed the state governmentâ€™s unhappiness over the state of theÂ Egbeda-Isheri Olofin road in Lagos, a project awarded to Bulletin Construction Company.
Subsequently, he announced the sack of the contractor and awarded the project to PlyconÂ Construction Company, which was handling the Isheri Olofin-Ikotun axis road.
Speaking during an inspection tour of the road, the Special Adviser, observed that theÂ contract, awarded about a year ago, has been abandoned by the contractor, whileÂ PlyconÂ Construction Company was at the finishing stage of the the road that links Isheri OlofinÂ with Ikotun.
The state government, Alausa Rhythms learnt, may have blacklisted the firm following itsÂ shoddy handling of the project that has already earned the state government a bad name.
Engr. Johnson, while announcing the removal of Bulletin Construction Company from theÂ project, said the state government took the step because of the firmâ€™s non-performance.
He also maintained that the action was a warning to other contractors that the government isÂ keen on the interest of its citizens.
Johnson, who appreciated the level of work done by Plycon, added that the road would be oneÂ of the Christmas gifts from the government to residents of the area.
The SA, who also visited the Maza Maza bridge construction site, which is an additionalÂ bridge to service the Lagos-Badagry Expressway with the 10-lane programme of the stateÂ government, expressed joy that the contractor, Julius Berger Nigeria Plc, was up to the taskÂ and meeting the deadline.
The 170-metre bridge, which is about 80 per cent completed, has a lane for the Bus RapidÂ Transit scheme.
He also said that the Orile-Iganmu Police Station would be affected by the road constructionÂ and plans were on to relocate it. TheÂ first phase is from Eric Moore in Surulere to MazaÂ Maza.
â€œBy the end of next year, we should be able to hand this project over, because we are onÂ course,â€ he said.
Meanwhile, jubilation has greeted the sack of Bulletin Construction Company currentlyÂ handling the Ipaja junction through Egbeda to Isheri-Olofin. Motorists plying the route wereÂ excited when the information reached them that the project has been rewarded to anotherÂ firm.
Speaking with Alausa RhythmsÂ on the issue, the motorists said they had thought the stateÂ government lacked the funds to execute the project and they had resigned to fate as theyÂ have had to constantly service their vehicles due to its deplorable condition.
â€œWe constantly pray that it should not rain, because if it does, then we are doomed. WeÂ thought the governor should have left the road as it was rather than award the project whenÂ he knew he could not complete it.
â€œWe did not know we were just passing through this hell because the contractor refused to doÂ his work,â€ Adeniyi Musa, a commuter bus driver in the area told Alausa Rhythms.
Another driver, who gave his name as Sunday, said he was happy that the road would beÂ completed by December as promised by Engr. Johnson.
â€œThe other contractor handling the Ikotun road is almost through with his job. If you knowÂ you cannot handle a project, then why bid for it?â€ he asked.
Dotun Ahmed, a driver, who plies the Iyana-Ipaja-Ikotun route, said several times, he hadÂ stopped working due to the damage to his bus as a result of the bad road.
â€œWe always make use of alternative routes, which are themselves in bad shape. You canÂ imagine working three days and repairing your bus the remaining days of the week,â€ he said.
Adebisi Ajayi, a banker who lives in Igando, a suburb of the state said since the roadÂ project began last year, she has been leaving home as early as five in the morning asÂ against 6.30a.m.Â â€œYet, I still get to the office late sometimes,â€ she added.