Reps: Julius Berger lacks capacity to handle Second Niger Bridge, Lagos-Ibadan, Abuja-Kano roads

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By Aisha Ahmed in Abuja

The House of Representatives Committee on Works, on Thursday accused construction giants, Julius Berger of lack of capacity to handle Second Niger Bridge, the Lagos-Ibadan and the Abuja-Kaduna-Zaria-Kano road projects.

The Committee was of the view that the road projects be split and shared to other companies to guarantee speedy completion.

The second Niger Bridge, was awarded for N206,151,693billion, the Kaduna-Abuja Road, was awarded for N155billion, while the 1st section of the Lagos-Ibadan road was awarded for N134billion.

The Chairman of the Committee, Rep Abubakar Kabir who spoke at the National Assembly Complex, after receiving the submission of the contractor, Julius Berger on the three projects said the way the projects were going,
it will be impossible for them to be completed and commissioned by the President Muhammadu Buhari administration.

The House’ enquiry on the three critical projects, followed a resolution of the House 27th February 2020 mandating its Committee on Works, to investigate the work done on the 2nd Niger Bridge and the two other road projects, awarded under the Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund (PIDF).

They also berated the company for allegedly submitting doctored documents claiming work done on the projects.

“At the rate at which the slow pace of working is going on, there is no way President Buhari will commission 2nd Niger Bridge, Lagos-Ibadan Express Way, Abuja-Kaduna-Zaria-Kani road, during his tenure”, Kabir noted.

The lawmakers who did not mince words in lambasting the company for failing to speed up the projects, even after collecting a whooping N200 billion from government said they would not stand idly and allow such sleaze.

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“Despite collecting more than N200 billion, Julius Berger is still yet to do substantial work on the projects”, Kabir said, adding that ” the documents presented (By Julius Berger) at the hearing, are fake”.

“We are recommending that these projects should be split and awarded to other companies because we don’t think Julius Berger alone, can handle them”.

The lawmakers also vowed to prevent any interested party from relooting the Abacha Loot, earmarked for the projects by the administration of President Muhammadu Buhari.

“The efforts of the Federal Government of Nigeria to secure the Abacha looted money, is well-documented, the government has said the money will be used on these critical projects, we will not allow the money to be relooted through inefficiency and corruption.”
According to him, “We cannot sit by and ignore the plight of Nigerians suffering daily on these roads, we will not allow the efforts of the President to deliver these projects to Nigerians, be in vain.”

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