Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State on Tuesday, approved the reconstruction of the 65-kilometre Moniya/Ijaiye/Iseyin Road for the sum of N9.9b.
The Naija Weekly learnt that the immediate past Governor of the state, Mr. Abiola Ajimobi, had earlier awarded the contract at the rate of N7b.
It was gathered that a sum of two billon naira (N2.b) was allegedly paid to the contractor by the government of Mr Ajimobi before he left office on May 29 this year.
Meanwhile,the State Commissioner for Works and Transport, Professor Raphael Afonja, announced that the contract has been re-awarded at the end of the state executive council meeting held on Tuesday.
According to Afonja, the road contract re-award, coming after the termination of an earlier contract awarded by the immediate past administration of about N7billion, would accommodate changes to the previous construction design.
He explained that the changes include an increase in the stobbing cause from about 150mm to about 200mm, change in the asphaltic wearing course from 40mm to 50mm, expanded drainage system, while the new cost will also take care of fluctuations in the pricing of construction materials.
While announcing that KOPEK construction firm had a mandate to complete the road reconstruction in the next 12 months, Afonja reiterated that the Governor Seyi Makinde led government terminated the previous contract due to inconsistency and underperformance.
“Let me announce that Governor Seyi Makinde and the executive council of Oyo state has approved the total reconstruction of Moniya-Ijaye-Iseyin road which is an important road that will add value to the economy of Oyo state. In terms of the amount, it is actually N9, 939, 702,66.53.
“We are all aware that the contract for the road was terminated by the governor due to the inconsistency and the underperformance of the other contractor that was engaged by the past administration.
“The question that might arise is that the initial award that was terminated was approximately N7billion, however, we have reviewed the design to make sure that the road constructed for this important food basket of the state has quality.
“We made some changes into the design, we increased the stobbing cause from about 150mm to about 200mm, we also changed the asphaltic wearing course from 4om to 50mm, we also realise that there was inadequate provision for drainage system for that road in the initial design but we have changed that to provide adequate drainage for it.
“And also, we considered the fluctuations basically in terms of pricing of materials, take for instance the price of bitumen. That was also factored into the new pricing. One thing we have also factored is that the road will last for a minimum of ten years.
“I must say that one of the things that was captured in the approval process is that this road would be completed in 12 months,” Afonja said.
Afonja spoke alongside state Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Professor Daud Sangodoyin who announced that 100,000 copies of a compendium of WAEC past questions were set to be distributed to schools across the state.
Afonja’s contract re-award announcement came just as the state house of Assembly, on Tuesday, urged the Minister for Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola to make funds available for the rehabilitation of federal roads in the state.
The Assembly’s appeal came on the heels of the appearance of Federal Controller of Works, Mr Godwin Ikebuaku, at plenary, who detailed the stage of works on federal roads in the state.
On the Oyo Iseyin road, he said 14 critical locations had been identified for emergency intervention repair works while the proposal for the complete reconstruction of Oyo-Iseyin road had been forwarded to the Ministry.
For the old Oyo-Ogbomoso road, he said work had reached 65 per cent completion rate though the contractors grappled with a setback stemming from constant rainfalls which disturbed borrowing and laying of laterite for earthworks.
With regard to rehabilitation of Odooba-Takie-Gambari-Otte road, Ikebuaku stated that the contractor had abandoned site since 2017 alleging inflation of material and low rate of contract items.
Speaking further, he said the Ibadan-Apata-Abeokuta road had reached 76.11 per cent completion rate while the dualisation of Oyo- Ogbomoso road experienced delay due to the rainy season and expectation of augmentation approval.
He added that the federal executive council had given approval for the complete rehabilitation of the Ibadan-Ife road, with engineers’ order to commence work being awaited.
He distanced the federal ministry of works from the Iwo-Ibadan road and Olorunsogo-Akanran-Ijebu Igbo road noting that the roads were not a federal road, as it was not in the inventory of federal highways