Yahaya Bello
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Kogi explosion: Presidency assures state of funds to fix bad roads, others

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Kogi State Governor, Yahaya Bello, has received assurance from the Federal Government to fix all government roads and other infrastructure, beginning with Felele along Lokoja-Abuja highway, where 23 persons, including five students of Kogi State Polytechnic and three children died in an accident involving a petrol tanker.

He spoke with State House Correspondents after he met with Vice President, Yemi Osinbajo at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

While commending the federal government for its efforts to fix road infrastructure across the country, Bello stressed the need for more attention to be paid to Kogi State, which links the northern and the southern parts of the country.

He noted that if Kogi State is cut, even the Federal Capital Territory will be heavily impacted.

Speaking on what transpired at the meeting with Osinbajo, the governor said, “the Vice President is a very caring father and is concerned about what happened in Kogi State, particularly in what happened yesterday, the unfortunate accident that claimed the lives of innocent citizens in Kogi State.

“So our discussion was very fruitful, he expressed his sympathies and condolences to the families of those that lost their loved ones and promised to ensure that federal government brings succour to the families of those that have lost their loved ones and to ensure that future occurrences, especially on that spot doesn’t occur again. So our discussion was very fruitful.”

On the way forward after his visit to minister of works and housing, Babatunde Fashola, the governor said part of the commitment extracted is the immediate deployment of the Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA), to fix the spot that claimed lives on Wednesday.

He said: “My visit to the minister of works and housing is in connection with the road infrastructure and other infrastructure that crisscross Kogi State, especially with the incident of yesterday. It is an accident, it can happen at any point in time.

“The minister swiftly invited all those that are concerned as far as our road construction and reconstruction are concerned. He has directed that FERMA moves into that spot immediately and fix those areas. Not only that, the road that links when coming from Okene, Lokoja, down to Abaji, between Kabba to Egbe, Umuaran to Ilorin and Ganaja village across to Shuntako, Dekina down to Ayangba, he has taken them very seriously and has promised that it will be well funded this time around.

“Also, the rehabilitation of Muritala Mohammed bridge, you know is only one lane that is being used, so he has actually called the contractors to ensure that they speedily complete that project in view of the ember months that we are in now.

“You will recall that last July, I was  on the road for five hours directing traffic in that area, so he expressed his concern also, moving forward federal government is going to fund the various contractors to ensure that those road infrastructure are completed.

“They are doing excellently well with road infrastructure across the country but we want more attention to be paid to Kogi State, because it is the gate way between the north and south because, if our road is cut off even FCT is going to suffer for it.”

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