The contractors handling the reconstruction of the Agbara- Badagry section of the Lagos-Badagry Expressway, have returned to the site.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the construction firm, CGC Nigeria Limited, in a move that surprised motorists, commuters and residents of the area, pulled out all their trucks and earth-moving equipment from the site at the end of August owing to a lack of funds.
The abandonment of the project caused a massive logjam that lasted for hours in the area, especially whenever it rained.
At the peak of the problem which became a nightmare for both motorists and pedestrians, the traffic hold-up started as early as 4 a.m. and would last throughout the day and into the night.
A NAN correspondent, who visited the site on Monday, reports that CGC had deployed about 12 of their caterpillars and other earth-moving equipment to the site around the Church-Gate area.
NAN also reports that some staff of the company was doing skeletal jobs, including the excavation of muddy patches.
Further investigation by NAN also revealed that some trucks belonging to the firm had started moving filling sand from the Ikoga area to the Church Gate area.
Meanwhile, motorists plying the expressway have expressed joy at CGC’s return to site.
Speaking to NAN, Mr. Kamarudeen Alaka, said he was delighted to see the construction workers back to the site.
According to him, the Church-Gate area of the expressway has become a nightmare for both motorists and commuters plying the road because of the endless traffic.
“That CGC workers are back to site calls for celebration.
“This has shown that our government is a listening one, we have begged them to pay the contractors so that they would return and now they are back.
“We thank President Muhammadu Buhari and the Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Raji Fashola, for listening to our cries,” he said.
A car owner, Elizabeth Ishola, said that she used to spend up to three hours in the gridlock at the Church-Gate area due to the abandoned project.
She said that seeing CGC workers back on site was a huge relief to her.
Ishola appealed to the government to ensure that enough money was provided for the workers so that they would not abandon the project again.
Meanwhile, a senior employee of the construction company, who pleaded not to be identified as he was not authorised to speak on behalf of the firm, confirmed that the company had not been paid.
He said the firm, however, had an agreement with the ministry to return to the site.
He said that the workers would not work `aggressively“ but “gradually“ until the government paid the firm.
NAN reports that traditional rulers in Badagry communities on Oct.19 appealed to the Federal Government over the abandoned Lagos-Badagry Expressway.
They told NAN that the abandoned portions of the expressway had become a major source of concern to them.
The Onimeke of Imeke Kingdom in Badagry, Oba Abraham Ogabi, said the Minister of Works and Housing, had earlier assured the royal fathers in Badagry that the first lane of the project would be completed before the end of the year.
“Instead of completing the project, the contractors have now abandoned portions of the project around the Ibiye community.
“The abandoned portions of the road have become a problem to the people and whenever it rains, there is gridlock in which motorists and their passengers spend several hours on the same spot,“ he earlier told NAN.