"We are appealing to you to help us recover the money” - Governor Dave Umahi

The Ebonyi Government on Friday appealed to the Federal Government to refund N35 billion it injected in the rehabilitation of federal roads in the state. Gov. Dave Umahi made the appeal during a courtesy call by the Minister of Works, Housing and Power, Mr Babatunde Fashiola who was on a two-day working visit to the state.

Umahi, who lamented the lean resources of the state, said that the Federal Government had only refunded two billion Naira out of N35billion it injected in the projects.
He appealed to the minister to assist in fast-tracking the reimbursement process, which he said, received Presidential approval before the intervention.
“You have been a governor, and you know that Ebonyi has always carried last in Federal Allocation and we are appealing to you to help us recover the money, ” Umahi appealed.
He said that the state had intervened in a number of federal roads in the areas of maintenance, rehabilitation and construction of new ones.
The governor listed some of the roads intervened to include; Okigwe-Afikpo, Ukawu-Abomege, Uburu – Mpu – Ishiagu,  Ohaofia-Oso Edda, among other roads.
He said that the state also constructed one kilometre three over head bridges on the trans African Highway to decongest the traffic.
He further appealed to the minister to ensure that two bridges that would link the state and Cross River at Oferekpe river and Ndibe beach axis of the state were constructed.
He said that the bridges when constructed would ease movement of persons and goods and enhance socioeconomic activities in the state.
Umahi also commended the minister for releasing One billion Naira that enabled the Setraco handling the road construction of Ishiagu-mile 2, 11.5km road to return to site.
“Just a mere phone call about June 2016, you intervened in the Ishiagu-mile 2 road by releasing the sum of N1billion to the contractor, this to us is show of solidarity and friendship, ” Umahi said.
He decried the quality job done in the Abakaliki – Afikpo road constructed by Uniglobe and CCC, saying that the state was not happy with the quality of job done by the contractors.
“We are not good at petitioning but I want to observe that as a government that we cannot accept nothing but the best for the our state.
“We disapprove of the quality of job been done on this very busy and important road in the state and request that you call the contractors to order,” he said.
Fashola commended the governor for the giant strides recorded by the government in infrastructure development.
He said that the Federal Government would always partner with state governments in the provision of democracy dividends to the people.
The minister said that he was in the South-East for an on the spot assessment of federal roads projects,
He said that his ministry would ensure that contractors handling road projects in the zone complied to specifications and complete the projects as scheduled in the contract terms.
He commended the state government for the partnership and cordial relationship between the state and federal ministry of Works, Housing and Power.
“I have been visiting since 9 a.m that we arrived Ebonyi all the project sites and I want to say that I am pleased with the quality of job being done.
“We have noted areas of concern and wish to assure you that we are going to look into the issue.
“We cannot tolerate contracts that are done outside of our specifications or substandardly executed, ” Fashola said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Minister was accompanied to the visit by officials of the ministry and the Federal Controllers of Works and Housing in charge of Ebonyi.

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