The Enugu state government has taken concrete steps to create more satellite towns in the state so as to decongest the state capital and bring development closer to rural areas.
To this end, the State Executive Council has approved the re-awarding of the contract for construction and completion of the vital New Market-Milliken Hill -Ngwo -Ninth Mile Corner Road, Enugu to two new contractors. It had earlier in 2013 been contracted to CGC Nigeria Limited.
While this facility on completion would open up and activate more economic activities along that axis, the council’s decision to also approve the construction work and installation of traffic solar street light at Mgbowo Junction in Awgu, along the Enugu- Port Harcourt expressway is also aimed at creating a viable satellite town within that area.
According to the state commissioner for information, Dr. Godwin Udeuhele, who briefed newsmen after the council’s meeting presided over by Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, completion of the Milliken Hill Road would cost over N1.8bn just as the Mgbowo project is billed to consume N357.844m.
Explaining the new decisions of the State Executive Council, the commissioner stated that the New Market-Milliken Hill -Ngwo -Ninth Mile Corner Road, Enugu was earlier contracted to CGC Nigeria Limited but would now be shared between Amitec Construction and Development Ltd and Servrrio Global Ltd at the total cost of One billion, eight hundred and forty-two million, one hundred and four thousand, eight hundred and thirty-five naira ninety-seven kobo for quick completion of the project.
“Decades ago, this road was built by the colonial masters but it has for years now remained in a deplorable condition prompting the immediate past administration to begin its rehabilitation since the road serves as a vital link from Enugu urban to 9th Mile Corner axis”, the commissioner noted.
He pointed out that the decisions to rehabilitate the Milliken Hill Road and enliven the Mgbowo Junction popularly called Aki na Ukwa Junction by installing the solar lights there are in line with Governor Ugwuanyi’s vision of decongesting the Enugu metropolis.
Explaining decision to re-award the road project to new firms approved by the council, Dr. Udeuhele stated that the job was awarded to the former contractor on 6th November, 2013 at the cost of two billion, four hundred and seventy-five million, four hundred and fifty-seven thousand, three hundred and fourteen naira, thirty-three kobo, during which the said contractor was mobilized with the sum of seven hundred and forty-two million, six hundred and thirty seven thousand, one hundred and ninety-four naira, thirty kobo.
However, he said “regrettably by November 2014 that contractor abandoned the site,” necessitating the present administration of Governor Ugwuanyi to invite the contractor for a meeting on 25th April, 2017 where the contractor asked for a variation of over N2.7 billion naira.
The government, however, decided to award the contract to the two new contractors at the same amount for which it was awarded in the 2013.
On the contract for upgrading Mgbowo to a satellite town, Dr. Udeuhele told journalists that Exco approved the construction work and installation of the traffic solar street light to Bambo Nigeria Ltd.
He further stated that the decisions were also taken based on the current administration’s zeal in decongesting Enugu metropolis, adding that Mgbowo is one of the proposed satellite towns.
The commissioner also stated that the Executive Council approved to allocate the land behind the Nigeria Police Station (MTD) Akwuke/Gariki, Enugu, measuring 7.655 hectares originally granted to Trans Global Nigeria Ltd for the purpose of the monorail projects to Enugu State Housing Development Cooperation for the purpose of development of a medium density housing estate for the people.
He further told the press that the council approved the rehabilitation of the pavements at Okpara Square Parade ground along with other auxiliary works at the total cost of N148,111,530,00 to Comog Steel and Construction Company Limited.
He stated that “the execution of this project will save Enugu state government a lot of money as further delay will lead to total failure of the pavements thereby requiring an overall reconstruction which will cost much more” he said.
Dr. Udeuhele also said that the meeting approved that the Hotel Presidential pool area be used as an event centre and directed the Ministry of Environment to clear the premises with immediate effect.