The Minister of State 1 for Power, Works and Housing, Mustapha Baba Shehuri has expressed satisfaction with the progress so far made in the ongoing federal road, housing and power projects in Northeastern Nigeria.The Minister stated this at Azare, Bauchi State while fielding questions from journalists at the end of his 6-day inspection tour of projects in the zone.
“I am satisfied with what I have seen. Funds are not very much available, yet in virtually all the projects visited, you find people working there. It has been the commitment of the government to provide amenities such as roads, power, rail, etc. to people to boost economic activities; and that is what is being done.
“As for employment generation, I think there is progress. government as you know cannot give employment to all the huge number of unemployed directly. The private sector is a key driver in that respect. What the government can do is to encourage private investment, and that is what is being done at the moment. The high rate of unemployment is something that has built up over the years and cannot be solved at once like that,” he said.
Most of the contractors said insurgency, insufficient fund, and environmental challenges were critical factors that have affected progress of work.
Ongoing projects visited during the tour included but not limited to: construction of 47KM Tudun Wuss-Kwanar Road which was commenced 14th May, 2017 with completion date of13th May, 2019, at 10.9% completion; construction of 37% completed 73KM Burga-Sum Road, commenced on May 7, 2017 to be completed 20th May, 2019 with an overall progress of 16.5% and a time lapse of 50%; construction of 38KM Ningi-Fuskarmata Road Phase III which commenced 17th February, 2015 to be completed at an extended date of December, 2019; the National Housing Programme site, all in Bauchi State, and Rehabilitation of Bridges and roads(85.5KM) along Bauchi-Gombe Road in both states, commenced May, 2017 to be completed May, 2019, now at 1.88% with 49.7% time lapse.
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