By Laleye Dipo
The federal government has embarked on the construction of four different road projects across Niger State and awarded contracts for two others, the Secretary to the Niger State Government (SSG), Alhaji Ahmed Ibrahim Matane, has disclosed.
The roads are Ibeto-Kontagora, Kontagora to Mokwa, Lambata-Lapai- Agaie, and the Suleja to Minna.
Speaking with newsmen in Minna, the state capital, Tuesday, Matane said that the federal government has awarded the contract for the Kontagora-Bangi and Kontagora to Rijau road projects.
The SSG did not disclose the length of the roads and their cost but said: “Some of these projects will be completed before the end of the year.”
He said the state government on its own has begun massive road construction throughout the state in addition to the Minna-Bida road as well as surface dressing of over 267 kilometres of rural roads constructed by the Rural Access and Mobility Programme (RAMP).
He also disclosed that the state government has entered into an agreement with the Korean government for the upgrading of the rail line from Baro to Minna to facilitate movement of goods and services from the Baro port to Minna which will soon be completed.
The commissioner said a technical support team for the preparation of a state Urban Policy had recommended that the state Water Board should be made independent for it to be able to serve the people better.
Though he said the recommendation was not to make the water board a fully commercial enterprise, the suggestion when adopted, will ensure that consumers pay for whatever they consumed while also avoiding wastage.
The government, he said, will also reform the education sector to the extent that it will be science and ICT oriented from primary to tertiary levels in addition to bringing schools close to the pupils and students.
“We need to reform the educational system in the state by building globally competitive economy through the creation of suitable ratio between science and humanity subjects in secondary schools and tertiary institutions by introducing the online version of the curricula for nursery to secondary school education,” he said.
Matane said the new urban policy would be backed by law for its sustainability and implementation.
He said members of the Technical Support Team were drawn from the academia, private sector and the civil service.