Jesusegun Alagbe with agency report
The House of Representatives Committee on Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA) says the sum of N30bn budgeted for the maintenance of federal roads in the 2021 budget is not enough, owing to the deplorable state of roads in Nigeria.
The Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on FERMA, Mr Femi Bamisile, therefore canvassed for appropriation of more funds for the construction and maintenance of federal roads across the country.
Bamisile, who is the All Progressives Congress (APC) lawmaker representing Ekiti South Constituency 2, made the call on Sunday while addressing commuters who got stranded on the Igede-Aramoko-Efon Road in Aramoko-Ekiti, Ekiti West Local Government Area.
According to the News Agency of Nigeria, Bamisile lamented the deplorable state of federal roads and also described the N30bn allocated to FERMA out of the budgetary provision to the Federal Ministry of Works as “paltry.”
The lawmaker was on the Igede-Aramoko-Efon Road to assess its state after a luxury bus got stuck at a bad portion of the road and obstructed the free flow of vehicles for several hours.
Bamisile sympathised with the motorists and said FERMA had begun the reconstruction of a bridge that collapsed at Ijan-Ekiti, Gbonyin Local Government Area, causing gridlock on the Ado-Ijan-Ikare Road axis.
He said, “We learnt that a bridge cut off at Jebba in Kwara State and these heavy trucks from the north and south now find Ekiti as the most convenient place to ply and that has further caused serious damage to both federal and state roads.
“I have moved round Ekiti and what I saw were disturbing. The bridge at Jebba had collapsed and made those going to the East, Central, far North, West and South-South of the country to be taking Ekiti route.
“On Friday, I saw about 1000 trucks along Ado-Akure Road stranded because of bad road. I pity what Nigerians are passing through at this time. This situation of bad roads is so unfortunate and we have to find solutions to it”.
He said the Federal Ministry of Works got a total of N460bn in the 2021 budget, out of which N30bn was allocated to FERMA.
He said the amount was too small for the agency saddled with maintenance and rehabilitation of roads across the country.