Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode on Wednesday said his administration’s plan to carry out a total reconstruction of the International Airport Road from Oshodi was being frustrated by the Federal Ministry of Works.
Governor Ambode, who
spoke to Government House Correspondents at the Lagos House, shortly
after carrying out an extensive inspection of some critical projects in
the State, said the present state of the Muritala Muhammed International
Airport Road was a national disgrace and required immediate attention
to salvage the nation’s image.
He said the State
Government presently has a design for the reconstruction of the road as
well as the funds to embark on the project but the Federal Government
was yet to grant approval.
The Governor said: “The
road linking Oshodi to the International Airport, you would all agree
with me is a national embarrassment. In the spirit of the regeneration
and urbanisation that this administration has set out to achieve, we
believe strongly that the image that is exhumed by the decadence of that
road must be repaired and we took it upon ourselves to appropriate the
2017 budget that the House of Assembly should approve the total
reconstruction of the Airport Road from Oshodi to the International
“The State currently has a design of 10
lanes to come from Oshodi to the International Airport with interchange
and flyover that would drop you towards the Local Airport. The
contractor is already set to go and everything as I said has been
completed and we already have the cash, but alas we are having
challenges with the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing. This is a
Federal and not a State road. The Federal Ministry of Works believes
that they should do the road, but they have not been able to do it all
these years past.”
He lamented that despite the fact
that the Federal Government was indebted to the State to the tune of
N51billion, which was spent on repairing Federal roads over the years,
the State Government’s effort to immediately transform the Airport Road
to world class standard was being frustrated.
Ambode said if given the approval, his administration was ready to hit
the ground running and begin construction of the Airport Road within two
weeks and finish same within a period of six months.
the Governor also implored the Federal Government to avail the State of
the N2billion appropriated for the Airport Road in the 2017 National
Budget to carry out the project.
“I just want to
remind Lagosians that prior to my becoming Governor, the Federal
Ministry of Works has been owing Lagos State a total of N51billion as
reimbursement for reconstruction that was carried out by the State
Government on federal roads in the State.
obviously, what we are asking for is that whatever it is that we are
asking for, it can never be up to the N51billion that they are owing us.
just want to appeal to the Federal Ministry of Works, to let go or
reimburse us with whatever it is that they are owing us and even if they
are not willing to pay us now, we have the money to do it. It is a
national disgrace and we would not be part of it. We would like to do it
as part of the celebration of Lagos at 50,” Governor Ambode said.
Governor also expressed frustration that six months after President
Muhammadu Buhari approved the handover of the Presidential Lodge,
Marina, the State Government was yet to gain access into the premises.
said that the inability of the State Government to access the Lodge was
seriously frustrating the programmes outlined for the Lagos @ 50
“One of the key venues that we need
to celebrate the real essence of Lagos, the historic place that we refer
to as Presidential Lodge is still more or less being tossed about in
terms of being handed over to us. We believe strongly that by May 27,
2017, we should be able to invite Mr. President and other people who
have actually made Lagos what is it today to that Presidential Lodge for
the final Banquet and Dinner to mark Lagos at 50.
we speak, we are yet gain entrance into that place and this is
frustrating our programme. So I want to use this medium to appeal and
say that the approval of Mr. President should be rightly honoured and
the agencies concerned, that is the Federal Ministry of Works and
Housing and the Security Services should honour that promise by Mr.
President. We just believe strongly that we must proceed to gain access
into that place so that we can roll out our programmes for Lagos at 50,”
Governor Ambode said.
On the projects inspected,
the Governor expressed satisfaction with the pace of work by the
contractors, saying that they would be commissioned as part of the
State’s Golden Jubilee celebrations.
that his administration has fully paid compensation to owners of
properties that had to give way for the Oshodi and Ojodu Berger
regeneration projects, the State Government has concluded plans to pay
property owners at Abule Egba within the next four weeks.
projects inspected include the Ojodu Berger regeneration project, Abule
Egba Flyover Project and also the Aboru Abesan Link Road and Bridge