By Patrick Obia And Mary Bassey
The Federal Roads Maintenance Agency had awarded and released the sum of N148.9 million to Jireh Habitation Integrated Services Limited for the rehabilitation of the deteriorating Okurikang-Akpap-Creek Town Road in Cross River State.
Parts of the road which is one among many federal roads in the state either on the verge of total collapse or already a death trap for motorists have been done but a long distance is left unattended, leaving commuters and pedestrians to worry about.
The rehabilitation was supposed to ease traffic challenges on the road which is widely believed to be the oldest in the state.
Ndifreke Offiong, a commercial motorcyclist who plies the road on a daily basis, said part of the road that is now completely washed off is a no-go area for bikes during the rainy period while the section of it with little tar left is a death trap.
“They started it from the front last year and then early this year, we don’t know why they left this side,” Ndiferke said, pointing to the worsening section of the road.
Not only in Cross River but also across the country, major roads are deteriorating without appropriate measures by the government to rehabilitate them.
Between 2013 and 2020, over 40,000 people lost their lives to road crashes, according to data from the Federal Road Safety Corps and the National Bureau of Statistics.
FERMA Declines To Comment
FERMA’s Director in the State declined to comment on the contract.
“Unfortunately, I do not have the capacity to grant you the interview but if you have a problem with our work, yes you can bring that to our notice,” Itaman Ijie told CrossRiverWatch.
The Federal Ministry of Works and Housing did not respond to multiple requests for comment.
This investigation is supported by Civic Media Lab.