The Federal Executive Council (FEC) has approved an additional N1.6 billion for the Manyam-Ushongo-Lessel-Kartyo-Oju-Agila road project in Benue State.
Following the FEC meeting on Wednesday, Information and Culture Minister Lai Mohammed informed State House correspondents of this. The meeting was presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo at the Presidential Villa in Abuja.
Mr Mohammed stated that the project’s initial cost was N1.35 billion, which was later revised to N2.9 billion.
“The Minister of Works and Housing presented one of the memos which was an approval for the revised estimated total cost of the contract of rehabilitation for the construction of Manyam-Ushongo-Lessel-Kartyo-Oju-Agila in Benue State.
“The contract for this road was actually awarded first in 2012; due to whatever reason, it is still not completed; and of course, if the contract was awarded in 2012, 10 years later, you expect the contractor to ask for augmentation. And that’s what happened today, it was approved.
“The original contract was N1.35 billion is now being augmented with an additional N1.6 billion; so the sum total is N2.9 billion,” he said.
He stated that the second memo approved for the ministry had to do with the Ministry of Works and Housing’s Mabuchi headquarters.
He claims that the ministry headquarters does not use or rely on the national grid for power because it is powered by the solar grid.
“And the memo today was to seek approval for the estimated total cost of the contract for the design and installation of solar power plus microgrid system and energy retrofitting of the ministry.
“Sometimes in March 2019, a contract was awarded for the provision of a solar power that would power the entire ministry; it was awarded at the cost then for about N2.7 billion.
“Now, they are seeking an augmentation of N309 million to bring the total cost to N3 billion.
“The reason for the augmentation is that in the process of executing the project certain works which were not anticipated before were to be taken into consideration.
“And in addition, this augmentation also includes a maintenance contract of the installation.”
Mr Mohammed stated that it was important to note that the federal government was diversifying its energy sources.
“And this is clean energy and the minister threw an invitation to any ministry that wants to go solar that they will provide the advice for them,” he said.