-New contractor moving to site soon – sources
Residents of Paul Palmer area in Igbogbo in Igbogbo/Bayeku Local Council Development Area of Ikorodu Division, Lagos State, Southwest, Nigeria, have, again, cried out to the representative of Ikorodu Federal Constituency, Hon. Babajimi Benson, not to abandon their road.
The community’s outcry was coming on the heel of the delay in the completion of the 330metre road project that was expected to have been completed in 12 weeks when its construction started in 2019, but now appears abandoned after about three years while the contractor was at a point vanished and later, reported dead.
The project was awarded to Fountain Dauglade Limited by the Federal Ministry of Works & Housing, Headquarters, Mabushi, Abuja, in 2019.
Incidentally, the road project was the first to be facilitated by Rep. Babajimi Benson, the representative of the Ikorodu Federal Constituency who is also the Chairman, House Committee on Defense.
The performing federal lawmaker has after the Paul Palmer Road, facilitated numerous other roads across the six council areas in his constituency, completed and commissioned them while two others are undergoing construction.
Chieftains of the Ife Oluwa Community Development Association (CDA) and residents informed THE IMPACT last year that the contractor, Mr Fashola, through his company, Fountain Dauglade Limited, moved to site on January 15, 2019, to start the construction but that to their surprise, the project was abandoned about two months after, precisely on November 23, 2019.
The community, during this period, also forwarded a petition to the Minister of Works in Abuja on January 23, 2020, to complain about the contractor abandoning the site.
When THE IMPACT spoke with the contractor, Mr Fashola, before his death, he said that the project was not entirely abandoned but that his workers left the site due to lack of funding.
Since then, the community has been making ceaseless pleas to the Federal Government, especially to the Ministry of Works, urge him to return to site but all to no avail until his death last year.
The community renewed their outcry last week calling on the facilitator of the project, Rep. Benson, not to allow the project to be abandoned.
In their recent protest, tagged, “Save Our Soul” On The Completion of Abandoned Road: Paul Palmer Street”, residents appealed to Rep Benson whom they described as reliable and resourceful, to come to their aid in ensuring that the road is completed.
Speaking with THE IMPACT, Mr Olajuwon, Vice Chairman, Ife Oluwa CDA, said that:
“Nothing has been done so far. No update, our community members are complaining bitterly about the state of the road…. and we are approaching the rainy season”, he said.
“The road is becoming worse day by day and it has been tagged as an abandoned project. We don’t have any choice than to tag it an abandoned project”, he added.
Mr Olajuwon, who said that they heard that the road has been re – awarded but not sure about it, also added that the community has appealed to Rep. Benson not to forget them.
Meanwhile, Mr Ade Bolowotan, the Chief Of Staff to the Chairman, Igbogbo/Bayeku LCDA, responding to the issue on the Igbogbo/Bayeku LCDA WhatsApp platform, pleaded with Paul Palmer residents to be patience as the lawmaker that facilitated the project is working on ensuring that another contractor move to site.
“The Council has contacted Hon Jimi Benson on this road and the re-awarding process of this contract is getting to the final stage. This was necessitated due to the death of the former contractor”, Mr Bolowotan said.
“Please, let’s be patient with Hon. Benson because he is a promise keeper”, he added.
Our reporter was unable to reach Hon. Benson, but reliable sources in his office informed THE IMPACT that the lawmaker recently visited the road with the new contractor and that he should move to site as soon as necessary processes are concluded and the ministry releases funds for the project.
One of the source said that the road is not abandoned because the representative of the Ikorodu Federal Constituency that facilitated it is not resting and will ensure that the road is fixed like many others that he has facilitated.