Reps committee boss bemoans state of roads, says infrastructure liabilities hit N300b
The Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Works, Toby Okechukwu, has decried the poor state of roads, especially in the southern and western regions of the country.
He said the National Assembly was committed to its oversight functions in ensuring that all budgets, contributions and levies made in favour of the sector are used judiciously in guaranteeing development for citizens.
Besides, the lawmaker said that the total liabilities of roads in this democratic practice in the country have hit N300 billion. Okechukwu, who spoke while reacting to the N553.713 billion capital vote earmarked for the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing in this year’s budget, said the allocation was grossly inadequate for offsetting outstanding debts on road contracts, carrying out road repairs and initiating new projects.
He said: “Despite that we are not yet there in setting aside the required percentage of our yearly budgets in line with global requirements for road infrastructure, I must say that we are channelling our efforts in the right direction.
“It cannot happen overnight. The government needs to consider adopting ways road users can pay for what they use.“As it is, there is a contractual commitment of N2.6 trillion and outstanding liabilities of N300 billion that have accumulated over the years. Consistent efforts have to be made to clear them because the part of the ministry’s allocation for the works sector is grossly inadequate to cater for the needs in the sector.”