By Talatu Bala
President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday approved N2.6 billion for the reconstruction of Sharada-Madobi road in Kano State.
The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, who also addressed journalists after the Federal Executive Council meeting on Wednesday, also said the council approved another N23.8 billion for the reconstruction of New Bussa-Kaiyaa road linking Niger and Kwara.
The minister also said the council approved a National Public Building Maintenance Policy and Framework.
He said the new policy, which institutionalized a maintenance culture in the country, would provide an inventory of government assets, and job opportunities for Nigerians.
“We have trained artisans at different levels but we have not created an economy for them to go and express themselves – Tilers, Bricklayers, Plumbers, landscapers, fitters etc.
“When they leave training schools what do they do? They go and ride tricycles where there is no training school because there is an economy in tricycles – this is the answer.
“So, we have started with a pilot (scheme) to demonstrate to Council that this will work.
“Some of the things that this will bring include an inventory of all assets that government owns.
“It gives us an assessment of the conditions and value, then, it gives us a maintenance framework about what needs to be done after assessments and then a maintenance procurement manual.”
Babatunde Fashola also disclosed that the Council approved the first contract of over N812.5 million for demarcation of specific areas of land to be affected by the actual construction of the Mambilla Hydro Power Project.
He said the contract involved nine land surveying companies, adding that the demarcation would eventually lead to enumeration and resettlement.
Mr Fashola said the contract was also preparatory to payment of compensation and commencement of main construction of the power project.
Also speaking after the meeting, the Minister of State, Petroleum, Ibe Kachikwu, revealed that the council approved N3.7 billion for the replacement of damaged petroleum pipelines for the Ministry of Petroleum Resources.
He said the pipelines were affected by corrosion but would be replaced with a new technology, flexible pipeline.
“The essence of this was that in 2014, the pipeline with which we were evacuating crude in that area gave way and so production became very marginal.
“We were producing an average of about 20,000 barrels per day as opposed to the capacity of between 37,000 and 40,000
“This contract is therefore to replace that pipeline with a new technology, flexible pipeline, to resist corrosion,” the minister explained.
On his part, the Minister of State, Aviation, Hadi Sirika, said the council approved $5million for the procurement and installation of the second phase of the Controller Pilot Data Link Communication for the Kano flight information region which will cover Abuja and Lagos airports.