Emmanuel Addeh in Abuja
Minister of Works, Mr David Umahi, has met with the Chairman, Dangote Group, Aliko Dangote, in the federal government’s efforts to strengthen the rehabilitation of Nigerian roads through public, private partnerships.
A statement signed by the minister’s Special Adviser, Uchenna Orji, said that the closed-door meeting also had the Governor of Taraba State, Agbu Kefas, and a former Minority Leader, Federal House of Representatives, Ndudi Elumelu in attendance.
The statement said that the consultation was in keeping with the road infrastructure initiative of the “Renewed Hope” administration of President Bola Tinubu.
It stated that Umahi had been engaging with concessionaires and other private sector organisations on the need for private sector investment on Nigerian road infrastructure as done in advanced economies of the world.
It recalled that the minister in his zeal to change the “ugly narrative” of road infrastructure in Nigeria had set up three committees to work on the contracts executed by some concessionaires with the federal ministry of works.
Umahi stated that this is with a view to reviewing the scope and cost implications of the projects they undertook to execute under the Highway Development and Management Initiative (HDMI).
The private sector initiative, the minister said, will fast-track road infrastructure revolution and bring order, accountability, and profitable entrepreneurship to the operations, management, and maintenance of federal highways.
“It is hoped that investors, local and international, and other organised bodies would take advantage of the will power of the President Bola Tinubu’s Renewed Hope administration.
“The private sector experience and professional capacities of the minister to invest in the over 35,000 Km of the national road network being managed by federal government will come to bear , as the road network carries more than 70 per cent of the vehicular traffic, making it a critical infrastructure for the movement of goods and services across the nation.
“This initiative will trigger economic development, job creation, local content development and wealth creation for Nigerian population. Mr. President means business with his efforts to prosper our country and make it the pride of the African continent. Their support is critical,” the statement added.