From Jeff Amechi Agbodo, Onitsha

The Federal Ministry of Works has commenced the construction of the 700-kilometre Lagos- Calabar Coastal Highway, spanning nine states with two spurs leading to the northern States.

The Minister of Works, David Umahi, disclosed this during the official handover of the first phase of the project, made up of 47.47 kilometres dual carriageway, to Hitech Construction Company Limited and which is to be constructed in concrete pavement.

According to him, the road construction was part of strategic plans of the Federal Government for holistic economic recovery of the country.

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Umahi, who was accompanied by the Federal Controller of Works in charge of Lagos State, Mrs  O. I. Kesha, emphasised the need for all contractors handling Federal Government’s road projects to deliver  within a record time, noting that the government  would  not allow  variation arising  from delays or slow  pace of work once mobilisation had been done.

In a press release issued by the Special Adviser on Media to the Minister, Mr. Uchenna Orji, the minister commended the contractor for being reputable for quality and speedy delivery of jobs.

He acknowledged their efforts in starting work immediately after the contract was awarded, saying: “They have completed some filling of 1.3 kilometres from the day the project was awarded to them. It shows the speed they are going to deploy to this project. Within a couple of weeks, we awarded the project to them, they mobilised a lot of dredging equipment, and you can see that they have recovered 1.3-kilometre of section one of the phase.”

The minister, who also visited project sites at the Queen’s Drive Ikoyi, the Third Mainland Bridge top deck, the under water, the Iddo Bridge, the Eko Bridge and Carter Bridge expressed the determination of the Federal Government to carry out a comprehensive rehabilitation of the bridges which he said are critical links between the Mainland and the Island of Lagos, the economic hub of the country.