Bodo-Bonny Road: FG Orders Contractor Back to Site within 14 days

From Lateef Taiwo

The federal government has ordered the contractor handling the Bodo- Bonny Road construction to return to site within 14 days or face sanctions.

Minister of Works Sen. David Nweze Umahi gave the marching order during a meeting with the handlers of the road project, Julius Berger PLC , as well as representatives of Nigeria Liquefied Natural Gas, NLNG, and Royal Fathers from Bonny Kingdom and other members of host communities in Abuja.

According to the Minister, the Bonny-Bodo road contract which was initially awarded at the cost of N120 billion in 2015, was later varied at N199 billion with a completion dateline of December 2023, which has since elapsed.

The Minister deplored the unilateral stoppage of work by Julius’ Berger, describing the action as unacceptable.

While rejecting in totality Julius Berger’s request for variation based on fluctuations in exchange rate and increasing cost of material, the Minister said government does not award contract based on exchange rate.

He pointed out that no contractor will come to government for a downward review of the cost of any project if the exchange rate becomes one naira to one dollar, adding that government cannot anchor contract cost based on exchange rates variations.

Senator Umahi was particularly unhappy that the timelines for the completion of the project were not adhered to, maintaining that if the project were completed in December 2023, as contained in the contract agreement , issues of high exchange rate and increasing cost of materials would not have arisen.

He however promised that he would make a presentation to Mr President for a marginal augmentation to ensure that the project is completed on or before December 2024, particularly in the Spirit of the Renewed Hope Agenda and the love President Tinubu has for Bonny Kingdom and other host communities in the Niger Delta Region.

Earlier in his presentation, the Managing Director, Julius Berger PLC, Engr Lars Richte, called for the variation of the contract which he said has become necessary in view of the declining value of the Naira and rising cost of construction materials in the country.

The Managing Director drew the attention of the Minister to the time lag when the contract was awarded in 2015 when the exchange rate was N305 to a dollar, adding that the cost of building materials has since risen by over 1000%.

Contributing, the Deputy Managing Director of NLNG, Olakunle Osobu pointed out that the contract which is being funded through the Tax Credit Scheme is intended to complement the Renewed Hope Agenda of the current administration, calling on all parties to the project to remain patriotic as well as make the necessary sacrifices for the actualisation of the project.

On their part, Roya Fathers of Host Communities led by Chief Abel Attoni, Palace Secretary, Bonny Kingdom expressed profound gratitude to President Bola Ahmed Tinubu over the decision of the Renewed Hope administration to ensure that Bodo-Bonny road is completed.

His Royal majesty applauded the commitment of the Works Minister to the road project.


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