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Operation Zero Potholes In Jos and Bukuru as Plateau Gov Threatens To Sack Erring Contractors

The citizens off Jos and Bukuru metropolis can breath a sign of relief as Plateau state Governor, Simon Lalong officially flagged-off  the operation zero potholes  programme in Jos and Bukuru metropolis.

Speaking at the flag off ceremony  which took place at the Constitution  hill junction in Jos , Lalong said " We are here today to flag off the rehabilitation of township roads as part of infrastructural development of Plateau State in line with one of our three-point policy thrust.

" By now, the citizens of our State and even visitors will attest to our commitment as a Rescue Administration to providing good roads which are critical to development.
Thus, when we assumed office, we decided to complete about 28 abandoned road projects that we inherited from the last administration. Our intervention saw contractors going back to site.
However, while some of these roads have been completed and commissioned, others are still ongoing at speed that is not acceptable to us considering the funds we have committed.
Consequently, I have directed the Ministry of Works to warn all erring contractors to return to site within 14 days or have their contracts terminated and re-awarded to more committed contractors.
It is one thing to expend funds in building road infrastructure, while it is an entirely different ball game in getting quality delivery and maintaining them for the benefit of the citizens.
Despite our efforts, we have seen the wear and tear of our roads which have caused hardship to motorists and commuters in many of our townships particularly the Jos - Bukuru metropolis.
That is why at the inauguration of Commissioners, I directed the Ministry of Works to implement zero tolerance to pot holes in the State to prevent them from further damage as well as enhance the convenience of motorists.

Today’s event, which is the flag off of “Operation Zero Potholes” within the Jos - Bukuru Metropolis therefore kick-starts the implementation of this directive.

" We intend to sustain this and ensure that it goes round the major townships in the 17 Local Government Areas of the State.

" Since one of our 3 –point Policy Thrust is Physical Infrastructural Development, we don’t intend to only build infrastructure in the State, but shall continue working hard to maintain them. "

" We cannot afford to let these road infrastructure decay to the point that they become a burden and threat to lives of our people.

" Henceforth, we will make sure we arrest any road deterioration early in order to sustain the lifespan of our roads and other infrastructure.

" At the same time, government will henceforth not tolerate the culture of neglect and abuse of public infrastructure which has contributed to the level of wear and tear we are experiencing today."

"We have also noted with dismay the flagrant misuse and abuse of these critical infrastructure through illegal erection of road bumps."

"Government has also noticed the use of the roadway for mixing concrete, dumping of construction materials and most worrisome, trading."
" These unfortunate abuses are prevalent on Ahmadu Bello Way, Terminus, Bauchi road, Kabong, Farin Gada, Kugiya in Bukuru to mention a few. No responsible Government will sit and watch this lawless behavior."
" Consequently, I have directed with immediate effect, the constitution of a high-powered Special Task Force that will rid our roads of street traders, illegal road bumps, illegal motor parks as well as check indiscriminate parking of cars and trucks within our roadways, especially at Dadin Kowa, Mai Adiko and other areas.

" On an auspicious occasion such as this, let me mention that the solar street lights we have so far put in place are not only to beautify the Metropolis, but also guarantee security. These solar street lights cost a lot of money and are appreciated and commended by the citizens.

" It is however unfortunate that reports reaching me indicate the destruction of some of the street lights by reckless drivers and some vandals.

" Since these lights are installed to serve the  public good, let me again warn that any road user that knocks down a street light, as well as vandals arrested will be made to pay the full cost of replacing it among other penalties the courts will hand down."
"I call on members of the public to report to the relevant authorities, anyone who knocks down or attempts to vandalise these street lights so as to guard our collective assets. If you see something, say something! "Government is also aware of community efforts to intervene in maintaining some road infrastructure within their domains. We appreciate your efforts and assure you of support especially if you properly and legitimately collaborate with the relevant agency.

There is no doubt that the demands for roads and other physical infrastructure are huge and the resources not sufficient. However, I have promised that we shall utilize the little resources judiciously to get value for money."

I want to emphasize that the rehabilitation of roads and construction of new ones will be a continuous one. I expect the Ministry of Works to be proactive and create good relationship with the public for information gathering and feedback.
I strongly advise and call on the general public to have a change of orientation to public property. When we treat public property as nobody’s property, decay and abuse become inevitable and the society loses at the end.
Let us all continue to join hands in the Plateau Project as the Rescue Mission works towards a lasting legacy for our State.
Speaking earlier Hon Pam Botmang the Commissioner for Works in Plateau said , determined to continue with the mandate of repositioning the state on a path of sustainable development ,Governor Simon Lalong had in April 2019  after his victory at the polls for a second term , constituited a high powered committee chaired by the deputy Governor Prof Sonny Tyoden ,to prepare a blueprint towards consolidating on the gains of the rescue mission ,
"Government inherited a total of 28 roads from the previous administration and unlike other previous administrations  and unlike previous   administrations ,Lalong continued with the inherited projects and has indees completed some , while others are at advance levels of completion "
"The Lalong led adminstration has awarded 25 new road projects out of which three have since been completed ,while others are at various stages of completion

Photo Credit: Josiah Jenvulu

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