Home Politics FG Moves To Recover Funds, Sack Non-Performing Contractors on East-West Road

FG Moves To Recover Funds, Sack Non-Performing Contractors on East-West Road

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FG Moves To Recover Funds, Sack Non-Performing Contractors on East-West Road

Nelson Chidiebere

The Minister of Works, Senator David Umahi has threatened that the Federal Government would soon commence the termination of projects whose contractors have failed to meet specifications.

The Minister issued the threat following a 3-day inspection tour of the Ahoada and Eleme sections East-West road as well as the Port Harcourt – Enugu express road over the weekend.

Umahi disclosed that the Federal government would not tolerate non-performing contractors who are delaying the completion of critical infrastructure projects.

He emphasized that the government is committed to ensuring that projects are completed on time and to the required standards.

The Minister also warned that the government would take necessary steps to recover funds from contractors who have not delivered on their contractual obligations.

He stated that the government would not hesitate to terminate contracts and re-award them to more competent and reliable contractors if necessary.

Umahi urged all contractors working on federal projects to prioritize quality and timely delivery, emphasizing that the government would not compromise on standards.

He assured that the government would continue to monitor and evaluate ongoing projects’ progress to ensure they are completed promptly.

The Minister’s warning comes as part of the government’s efforts to improve infrastructure development in the country and ensure that projects are completed efficiently and effectively.

The East-West road project is a critical infrastructure project that connects the eastern and western regions of Nigeria, and the government is keen on ensuring its timely completion for the benefit of the people.

He further disclosed that he would be having a meeting with cement manufacturers today (Monday) to identify and mitigate some of the challenges facing them, as well as single out and punish producers ripping off Nigerians with exorbitant prices.

“I have earlier met the cement manufacturers behind closed doors and they complained about a lot of things and why some of them have increased their prices, they complained of the high exchange rate and their challenges in acquiring spare parts for their machines and other components of their equipment which are imported, also they have problems of buying diesel and gas.

“But when we ask for their ex facto price, some are still selling N5,500, some about N6,000, so why do we have the cement sold sometimes N10,000, others N12,000 and so on, it is not healthy for us.

“So Mr President has directed that we interface with them, look at their problems and then see who is ripping off Nigerians and see how we can help them, both the transporters and the manufacturers, that is what we are going to do on Monday.”

However, he charged the contractors not to allow the incoming rainy season to disrupt the work, directing them to build trenches that would drain rain and store them at the shoulders of the road.

Inspecting the Ahoada section of the East-West road that was severely affected by flash floods in 2023, the Minister said the government bidded the affected sections of the road, adding that contractors with excellent capabilities have taken up the rehabilitation, deploying a more durable design.

He expressed his satisfaction with the ongoing work in the section, emphasising that moving forward, contractors would no longer be allowed to delay road construction for flimsy reasons.

Also speaking at the construction site, Deputy Chief Whip of the Senate and Member of the Senate Committee on Works and Public Accounts, Senator Onyekachi Nwaebonyi, said contractors must henceforth show value for the monies they received from the Federal Government.

He, however, thanked President Tinubu for appointing Engr. David Umahi as the Minister of Works, said he is an expert who knows the job he has been assigned to do.

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