LAGOS – Mr John Ibe, the Director, South West, Federal Ministry of Works, said on Thursday that the rehabilitation work on the Apapa/Oshodi Expressway would be completed before January 2015.
Ibe said this in Lagos at a meeting between oil terminal operators and Julius Berger Nigeria Plc – the contractor rehabilitating the expressway.
“We are here to address the problem of the gridlock; we are here with the stakeholders to find a solution on how the contractors could move in and do their work.
“I am happy to say that we have succeeded. The contactor is moving immediately to start work.
“We are sure that in no time the work will be completed. In a couple of weeks, they will finish the job, if access is giving to them.
“From the meeting here, you can see that Julius Berger was ready to work but there was no access for them to come in and work.“
Mr Godwin Eke, Federal Controller of Works, Lagos, said that Julius Berger would complete the Creek road, Apapa, soon before embarking on the repair of the major road linking the Ibru oil terminal.
“From now on, Julius Berger is moving back to site even though they’ve been working around Creek Road but now they are coming to finish up this access around Ibru Terminal.
”My impression is that they are coming back to finish the access to Ibru terminal but this is most critical.
“You heard them in the meeting say they are moving back. Is not that they’ve not been working, they’ve been working but from other locations like Creek Road.
“The major problem was lack of communication. Now we are communicating, things will change; they are cooperating.“
The General Manager, Ibru Oil Terminal, Mr Victor Enebeli, said that the operators would give the contractor maximum cooperation to complete the contract.
“He has been mentioning one fear and he has always been complaining, on limited access to his place of work and I want to assure him the NUPENG PTD is here.
“Enebeli said he was shocked this morning he got there was no truck. We have sat down and we have decided on a mode of operation that will give them that unlimited access.
“Once this meeting is through we are holding another meeting here to address that issue. It is not magic that he sees the road this way.
“If Julius Berger is assuring us that they are going to come to site and do what needs to be done to achieve what they need to achieve even before the four weeks, they have that access.
“So the access shouldn’t be a problem and I tell you if we are working as they are working.
“They say they will leave the service lane to us and one portion of the major road, I tell you, you won’t have problem working.”
The Project Manager, Julius Berger Construction Company, Mr Wolfgang Panzer, said it was possible to complete the Ibru Road off Apapa/Oshodi Expressway “if the access road is free“.
“It’s the other way, when I was coming here I was surprised that the whole carriage lane is free, so it works somehow.
“It works and the experience is from time to time before when we have even stakeholders’ stakeholders meeting.
“I remember two or three stakeholders meeting we had before and for two, three days, the main carriage way was free.
“So it is possible somehow that the access to our construction site is free, if we see a situation as today that the main carriage way is free. If we find a situation as today, we can work in the night.
“Working in the night is not a constraint for Julius Berger. There are several other constraints that we have when we are working during the night time.
“Night time is not an option for us because all the service units have to be available, like machine, techniques, service lorries and all these things. We have no possibility to shift them day and night.”