By Henry Odeh
Moniya-Iseyin Road: N9.9Bn For Reconstruction Not Rehabilitation, Oyo Govt Clarifies Reason For Cost Increment
The Oyo State government has today made clarifications on how it arrived at the new figures of the Moniya–Iseyin road, which is the only major road connecting the entire Oke Ogun zone regarded as the food basket of the state to the state capital.
A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to Governor Seyi Makinde, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, quoted the State’s Commissioner for Public Works and Transport, Prof Raphael Afonja, as saying “the new contract was a clear departure from the rehabilitation contract given out at the cost of N7 billion by the last administration,” he said.
The statement shows that the total reconstruction of the 65-kilometre Moniya-Iseyin Road was arrived at taking into consideration the extensive reviews of the components and the desire to construct a road that would withstand the test of the huge traffic on plying the road.
Afonja stated further that the cost of the new road, which is expected to be completed in 12 to 14 months, stands at N9.9 billion adding that the road belongs to Oyo State and that it links the state capital with the food basket of the state, which also serves as the solid mineral belt of the state.
He said “The contract to be executed by KOPEK Construction Company should be of high quality, being the road linking the food basket of the state,” the statement read.
He noted that some of the components of the road reviewed by the state executive council which informed the cost upward review include the design of the project, price fluctuation, asphaltic wearing cost, and adequate drainage system.
The statement quoted the Commissioner as saying: “Let me say this quickly, Moniya-Iseyin road is not a federal road but a state road. Oyo-Iseyin is the federal road. In terms of the amount, it is actually N9,929,702,66, which is approximately N9.9bn. The question that may arise is the initial award that was approximately N7bn.
“However, we have reviewed the design to make sure that the road that will be constructed for this important food basket of the state has high quality.
“We have made some changes including the design. We increased the stone base core from 150mm to about 200mm. We also changed the asphaltic wearing cost from 40mm to 50mm. We also realised there was an inadequate provision for drainage system along that road in the initial design but we have changed that to provide adequate drainage system.
“Also, we considered the fluctuation basically in terms of pricing of materials, bitumen for example. That was also factored into the new pricing. Another thing is, the road will last for, at least, minimum of 10 years.”
The statement further indicated that the immediate past government of Senator Abiola Ajimobi had, in February 2018, awarded the contract for the rehabilitation of the road at the cost of N7 billion, out of which N2 billion was paid to the Contractor who could not deliver on the terms.
The contract has since been revoked by the state government and ordering the contractor to refund the initial payment of 2bn by the immediate past administration.