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Govs want FG to transfer some roads to states


State governors on Thursday urged the Federal Government to hand over some of its dilapidated roads to them for rehabilitation.

The governors made the call during a meeting of the National Economic Council presided over by Vice-President Yemi Osinbajo at the Presidential Villa, Abuja .

The council chaired by the Vice-President had all state governors, the Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, and the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria as members.
The Ebonyi State Governor, Dave Umahi, briefed State House correspondents at the end of the meeting .

Umahi said the state governors would rehabilitate the dilapidated federal roads through investors and thereafter introduce toll on the roads .

He said the step was necessary because the Federal Government lacked the necessary budget to fix all the bad roads .

The governor said the council also asked the Minister of Power, Works and Housing , Babatunde Fashola , to regulate the weight of trucks plying the nation’ s highways as they had been identified as parts of the factors contributing to the breaking down of the roads .

Umahi said , “ The council was highly concerned about the failure of our roads . Even after fixing the roads , they would collapse within six months and we noted that overloading is one of the major factors .

“ We have noticed that a lot of our trucks carrying majorly fuel do 45 , 60 or 70 tonnes and that’ s a major concern to state governors.
“ We said the Minister of Power, Works and Housing should come up with a strategy to regulate the weight of heavy trucks plying the roads which have been fingered as the root cause of road collapse.

“ Lastly , the state governors are very much concerned about these failures, it has been agitating our minds and we are thinking about strategies and we are soliciting that the Federal Government give out some of the federal roads to states so that states can fix the roads through investors and toll the roads .

“ We believe strongly that it will be more effective because the number of federal roads that is being handled by the Federal Government , there is no amount of budget that can fix it . ”

He said the Minister of Finance , Kemi Adeosun , made a presentation on special accounts of the federation and gave closing balances.

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