President Muhammadu Buhari has commissioned the Nenwe, Oduma and Uburu communities in Enugu and Ebonyi States, a 40.37-kilometre facility, linking the two South-eastern states.
It brings to three the number of roads commissioned across the country in the last two weeks by the president.
The other two roads commissioned by the president included the 304 kilometre Sokoto-Tambuwal-Jega-Kontagora-Makera Road, inaugurated last Thursday and the 24-kilometre Vandeikya-Obudu Cattle Ranch Road (Phases I and II) in Benue State officially flagged off on Monday, November 29.
In his remarks before the official inauguration at the Ezinike-Oduma Village, Buhari, who was represented at the event by the Minister of Science, Technology and Innovation, Dr. Ogbonnaya Onu, said the move represented the commitment of his administration to improving road transport infrastructure, ease of doing business and job creation.
He observed that one element of change in those roads was “the travel experience on new and well-built roads” as opposed to the not-too-distant unpleasant experiences from the old and previously “unmotorable” roads.
He noted that reduced journey times as a result of the improvement in the road network meant reduced expense on travel, pointing out that reduction in travel expense also meant more money in the pockets of travellers.
He explained that a situation where the previous travel time on a road, which averaged one hour 30 minutes before construction, was reduced to 30 minutes after the completion of the road, meant both money and time had been saved.
Urging commuters not to abuse the road and to obey traffic rules and regulations, Buhari, who reiterated that the roads have been built to the highest quality, urged them not to abuse the roads.
“Road abuse takes many forms such as overloading of vehicles and trucks which accelerates pavement damage, spilling of petroleum products, which dissolves all the components and allows water to penetrate.
“It also involves converting the road shoulders to permanent parking places, that brings the onset of road failure from the shoulder”, the president said.
In his remarks, the Minister of Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola said the commissioning underscored the Buhari administration’s investment in road transportation and the impact on the citizenry.
According to Fashola, who was represented by the Director Highways, South-east zone, Mr. Bola Aganaba, it represented another example of what the country would experience in more days and weeks to come.
He listed the other handovers that will follow to include the 142.2×2 dual kilometres between Shuwarin and Azare connecting Jigawa and Bauchi States and Section III of the 106.3×2 kilometres between Azare and Potiskum connecting Bauchi and Yobe States.
In his remarks, the Enugu State Governor, Dr. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, who was represented by the Commissioner for Works in the State, Mr. Greg Nnaji described road construction as the cradle of civilisation.
He recalled the harrowing experience that commuters went through before the Buhari administration took the road to completion stage.
He added that with the completion, the people of Enugu and Ebonyi, who he said are farmers, would easily bring their farm produce to the various markets with ease.