By Bisade Ojoye
Ogun State Governor, Prince Dapo Abiodun, on Thursday, turned the sod for the reconstruction of the Atan-Lusada-Agbara Road, with a promise that the road will not be abandoned.
The governor also commissioned the 10.25km Lusada Junction-Igbesa-Ogun Guangdong FTZ Road, a project undertaken via a Public-Private Partnership.
At the twin-event, Chairman Senate Committee on Works, Adamu Ailero, assured the Ogun State Government that the committee would ensure that the reconstruction work on Atan -Lusada-Agbara road be included in the 2022 Appropriation Bill.
Flagging off the 19km Atan-Lusada-Agbara Road, Abiodun said the commencement of rehabilitation work on the road would impact positively on the ease of doing business along the industrial corridor.
Both events were attended by the Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Niyi Adebayo; Chairman, Senate Committee on Works and former governor of Kebbi State, Senator Adamu Aliero; Senator representing Lagos West and Chairman, Senate Committee on Finance, Senator Olamilekan Adeola; Senator Ayo Akinyelure, Senator Opeyemi Bamidele and Senator Micheal Nnachi, among other dignitaries.
While saying the road will be completed in 15 months, the governor said though the road, which is part of the Sokoto-Badagry Expressway, belonged to the Federal Government, his administration decided to embark on the reconstruction of the road in order to give succour to the residents and industries along the axis.
Abiodun, who reiterated that his government would not develop any part of the state at the expense of another, disclosed that over 172 kilometres of road had been constructed, while 120 kilometres had also been rehabilitated across the length and breadth of Ogun State within two years of his administration.
The governor assured that all roads leading to industrial areas and farm settlements in the state will be prioritised to boost economic growth and development.
He commended President Muhammadu Buhari-led Federal Government for the prompt approval of the request for the transfer of the rehabilitation, reconstruction and maintenance of Atan-Lusada-Agbara road to the Ogun state.
He, however, urged the residents along the axis to take charge of the project, disclosing that the youths in the area would be gainfully engaged during the construction of the road.
“No doubt, today’s twin event of turning of sod of Atan-Lusada-Agbara road and commissioning of the Lusada-Igbesa road is part of our administration’s commitment to provide infrastructure in order to continue to open up our border communities along the axis.
“It is, in fact, an assertion of our strategic and deliberate approach to reposition all our industrial hubs in our dear state. And, no doubt, Ogun West, especially the Agbara Industrial Estate, which is one of the biggest industrial estates in Nigeria remains key to the development of Ogun State.
“In this direction, the completion of Atan-Lusada-Agbara, which is expected in the next 15 months, will go a long way towards improving the quality of life and advancement of commerce in Ogun West and other industrial hubs in Ogun state.
“And, I am very optimistic that, at completion, this Atan-Lusada-Agbara Road will not only improve Ease of Doing Business in this area, but bring a wholesome development to the entire Ogun West District”, Abiodun stated.
In his remark at the event, Chairman, Senate Committee on Works, Adamu Aliero assured the Ogun State Government that the committee would ensure that the reconstruction work on Atan-Lusada-Agbara road is included in the 2022 appropriation bill.
The Senator noted that the Abiodun-led government had thought it wise to reconstruct the federal government road because of concern for the people of the state.
He described the initiative as a symbol of good governance which must be appreciated, while urging the governor to ask for reimbursement from the government at the centre upon completion of the project.
“This road is a Federal Government road, because of concern you have for your people you decided to embark on the reconstruction of the road because of its economic value, not only to the state, but to the country. This is what good governance is all about.
“I want to urge you to ask for reimbursement from the Federal Government upon the completion of this project. This project is much more important to Ogun State and by extension Nigeria. I appreciate you for this initiative, it is a right step in the right for the benefit of the country.
“We’ll give the necessary support to ensure that this project is included in the 2022 budget”. Aliero stated.
The Minister of Industry, Trade and Investment, Niyi Adebayo, lauded the governor for taking the bold step to rehabilitate the industrial road, assuring that his ministry would continue to collaborate with the state in the areas of trade and investment.
In their respective remarks, Senator Olamilekan Adeola and former senator who represented Ogun West at the NASS, Akin Odunsi, expressed their delight at the decision to reconstruct the road after years of abandonment