Sylvester Idowu in Warri
An aide to Delta State Governor, Ifeanyi Okowa and Special Project Director of Sector A of Ughelli-Asaba Road Project, Chief Sunny Onuesoke has traced the causes of Nigerian road failure to stereotype engineering design.
Onuesoke made the statement when Officials of Project Implementation and Evaluation, Project Monitoring, Governor’s Office, headed by Hon Raymond Edijana, visited Sector A of Ughelli-Asaba Road Dualisation Project.
He said not until Nigerian engineers deviate from using one particular design in construction of roads in different parts of Nigeria, the country would continue to experience the problem of road failure.
He explained that the construction of a road starts from conception, planning and design, stressing that without a good design of the road, its functionality may not be achieved.
Onuesoke argued that even when the construction and supervision is adequate, without the design process well done the end product, in the form of a road project, would not be functional.
He observed that most of the roads in the country were designed by consultants, some of whom were not within the environment of the road work, adding that this had led to a situation where preliminary studies of the environment that should help the design and construction decisions were not done.
“Consequently, they constrain their design to a particular style which leads to poor understanding of the road environment which subsequently leads to poor road design and construction. Designs that are meant for dry land areas like in the Northern part of the country for instance are equally applied to riverine areas of the Niger Delta region. Thus, if such design last ten years in the North, it will not last up to five years in the Nigeria Delta region because of the different environmental terrain,” Onuesoke explained.
He disclosed that for the road network to last longer and save it from early total collapse, it required good and efficient pragmatic engineering designs framework that takes the different environmental terrain in the country into consideration.
Onuesoke advised that foreign road construction expatriates should be made to work side by side with local professional bodies that have more knowledge of the local environment, stressing that the professional bodies could act as checks and monitors to the construction firm on road work in the country.