Following the reconstruction of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, indications have emerged that the Federal Government plans to demolish illegal structures in Mowe, Ibafo and other smaller communities along the road.
Sources at the Federal Ministry of Works told our correspondent that the communities had contributed to the slow pace of work on the Sagamu to Ojota section of the road being handled by Julius Berger Plc.
“They have been asked to move and very soon the Ministry will move everybody and demolish those shanties and other illegal structures. The Federal Government paid compensation during the construction of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway and no permanent structure is supposed to be on the right of way, but Nigerians are totally indiscipline,” one of the sources said.
Another source in the Ministry said the space on both sides of federal highways, up to 45.72 metres, should be clear of obstructions, but that illegal developments such as markets had taken up the right of way, thereby making construction in the areas difficult.
“There is supposed to be a 45.72 metres space from the centre of the road but the areas are completely built up, so, when the construction project gets to those points, which is very soon, they will be demolished and there will be no compensation,” the source added.
Construction experts had lamented that the pace of work on the Sagamu to Ojota end of the road, which is about 43.6 kilometres, had been slow compared to the Sagamu to Ojo town in Ibadan, which is about 86 kilometres and being handled by Reynolds Construction Company.
A regular user of the road, who is also a construction expert, Gbenga Awelewa, said activities on the road during the dry season were below expectation.
He said, “They have only done a little aspect of the road from where they stopped during the last administration. The areas where they have worked are basically undeveloped and now they are just approaching the built-up areas.
“If they spent such a long time at the normal areas, how long will it take to finish the densely populated areas, which are from Mowe/Ibafo to Ojota? They need to speed up the work.”
Another construction expert, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, said Julius Berger had been concentrating on bridges instead of the troubled spots where motorists spend hours before getting to their respective destinations.
Sources at the Ministry, however, said the project contractors were working with the agreed programme and every part of the road would be reconstructed.