By Brangyet Kabien
The Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, has decried the poor budgetary allocations for infrastructure development in Nigeria, saying that a minimum of N500 billion is required annually for the next three years to develop the country’s 35,000 kilometres network of roads.
The minister said: ”We inherited a number of roads, and we resolved that we were going to complete as many of them as possible.
“Many of these roads, some of them started in 2007, some in 2006 and others are even older, but unfortunately for reasons that we can only imagine, at a time that the country was earning more revenues, up to $100 per barrel, the total budget of this country was N4 trillion.
“It is now that the country is earning very less, $40 per barrel that it is budgeting N13 trillion. So, those roads should have been done before we came. Even the ones done by the state governments were not paid for, and so we are just paying.
“I think that a minimum of half a trillion every year over the next two, three years would be a strong support to advance and complete as many as the 711 contracts we have.
”Again, some people are mistaking these contracts to mean roads.
”So, the totality of these are 711 and the total road network now under construction or rehabilitation is a little over 13, 000km in different stages of repairs out of the total federal road network of 35, 000km.”
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