- Â FERMA got only N800m from 2017 budget
Damilola Oyedele in Abuja
The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, has said the federal government will reintroduce toll gates on federal highways for toll collection which would however be fixed at floor and ceiling prices.
Fashola said the toll gates would only be re-introduced after the roads have been standardised.
The toll fees would be deployed towards maintenance of the highways, he said.
Speaking yesterday when he appeared before the Senate Commitee on Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA) chaired by Senator Magnus Abe, Fashola said the design for the tolls had been finalised.
Existing laws allow the government to toll, he said and added that the completion of the road constructions are being awaited.
â€œIt is not right to toll faulty roads,â€ he said.
The minister also disclosed that only N800 million has so far been released out of the N25 billion 2017 budget appropriation to FERMA.
Fashola said the low release was because the agency had no management team and added that he has received the assurances of the Ministry of Finance that the appropriation would be released soon.
The management team was appointed by the President in October 2017.
The minister also disclosed that the ministry is in talks with contractors for palliative measures to ensure the roads are motorable for the approaching festive season.
Speaking earlier, Abe said the committee remains worried at the state of the highways which would experience increased traffic during the festive season.
There will be logjam because of the state of some of the highways and of course risk of accidents, Abe added.
He expressed commitment of committee to ensure FERMA lives up to its mandate.