FOUR MONTHS after The ICIR report detailed how a 14–kilometre road connecting Pegi community to Kuje area of Abuja, Nigeria’s capital, was left uncompleted for over nine years, work has resumed on the road.
The Federal Capital Territory Administration (FCTA) has mobilised the contractor, Verallen Nigeria Limited back to the site.
The development first came to light during a radio programme, Public Conscience, produced by the Progressive Impact Organisation for Community Development, PRIMORG, where residents announced that work had again commenced on the road.
PRIMOG had late last year called The ICIR’s attention to the bad condition of the road after a similar radio program, leading to an earlier investigative report published in November 2020.
In a letter dated March 3, and seen by The ICIR, the FCTA said the contractor had been mobilised back to the site, adding that the authorities were processing the contractor’s payment for the completion of the abandoned road project.
The ICIR had in the earlier reported detailed how residents of the community had been experiencing miscarriages, kidnapping and even death, despite the fact that a sum of N676 million was awarded for the road project in 2011.
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Speaking to The ICIR on the recent development, Pegi Estate Community Development Association (PECDA) chairman Isaac Aderibigbe said it was true that the contractor had been mobilised back to the site but decried the pace at which the work was moving.
“We are glad that work has resumed back on the road after over 10 years that the road has been awarded.”
Aderibigbe, however, alleged that the contractor had on March 12, stopped work on the road again, adding that the community was optimistic that the road would be completed this time.
The PECDA spokesperson Oyedeji Oyetunji said the contractor had only done about 100-metre concrete drainage.
“The contractor has absconded again. He has only done about 100 metre concrete drainage and we have not seen him again since March 12.”
Managing director of the Verallen Nigeria Limited Allen Egbe told The ICIR that he had returned to site, but declined to speak further on the road project.
“It is true that I have been mobilised back to the site but you can get in touch with the FCTA on any further information on the road project,” Egbe told The ICIR during a telephone conversation.
Part of the drainage done on the road
The ICIR also contacted the permanent secretary to the FCTA Olusade Adesola, who promised to get back to this reporter, but he was yet to do so as of press time.
“I’m currently in a meeting, I will get back to you,” Adesola told The ICIR via telephone conversation.