By Mashe Umaru Gwamna
President Muhammadu Buhari said Nigerian government is rebuilding,expanding and replacing strategic highways and bridges across the country apart from trans Africa connected roads.
He made the disclosure at the 7th edition of the Africa Road Builders -Trophee Babacar Ndiaya inaugural conference 2022 in collaboration with federal ministry of Works and Housing, yesterday in Abuja.
Buhari who was represented by Minister of Works and Housing Babatunde Fashola, stated this while accepting Africa Road Builders Award for the Hope, Prosperity and Progress of Nigeria.
He said over 13,000Km roads and bridges construction, expansion and rehabilitation are visible nationwide.
According to him, infrastructure investment is good for the economy, when roads are good.
The president emphasized that, highways roads have been a major boost for the growth of the economy.
“Keeping people at work; driving a supply value chain, stimulating productivity at Quarries, Cement Factories, Steel Factories, and the Petroleum sectors for lubricants, fuel and bitumen is necessary.
“Our most recent GDP results of 3.40%, is the biggest in the last 7 years which clearly show that the construction sub-sectors and related sub-sectors of the economy were among the big performers of the growth surge”.
He said the Trans African Highway programme, launched in 1971 sought to connect the whole of Africa through a major system of Nine (9) highways, the TAH1 to the TAH9 covering an aggregate distance of 56,683km.
“I also acknowledge the support of the Bank in financing Feasibilities, Consultancies and Pre-construction work on the Lagos-Abidjan Corridor comprising Nigeria, the Republic of Benin, Togo, Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire which is part of Trans African Highway No. 7 from Dakar in Senegal to Lagos in Nigeria.
“I am happy to report that the Nigerian sections of this highway is now under construction on the Lagos-Badagry corridor through our local financing institution such as the Tax Credit Scheme introduced by Executive Order No. 7; and in collaboration with the Lagos State Government.
“I am able to report that apart from Trans African Highway No. 7, Nigeria is also connected by Trans African Highways No. 2, Algiers to Lagos and Trans African Highway No. 8, Lagos – Mombasa.
“The East to West crossing of Nigeria across the Second River Niger Bridge which will be finished this year is a major investment by Nigeria on the Lagos-Mombasa Trans African Highway, as is the Enugu – Abakaliki to Mfum Highway.
“The 375Km Abuja to Kano that is now under construction is Nigeria’s major part of the Trans African Highway No. 2; Algiers to Lagos.
He maintained that, the Apapa-Oworonshoki Highway in Lagos is strategic for trade and business facilitation to support “our busiest and largest Sea Port in Apapa and Tin Can Island.”