How Lagos-Calabar highway will benefit Nigerians – Tinubu

Screenshot 2024 05 27 at 6.51.49 AM

President Bola Tinubu on Sunday inaugurated the construction of the 700km Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway, saying it would revolutionise transportation in Nigeria and boost unique economic strength of each zone.

The President spoke from the Ahmadu Bello Way, Victoria Island, Lagos end of the project, which would traverse nine states along Nigeria’s coastal shoreline.

Presidential spokesman Ajuri Ngelale, in a statement on Sunday in Abuja, said it would link the A1, A2, A3, and A4 highway corridors vertically crossing the western, central and eastern regions of the country, north to south.

Starting from Lagos and terminating in Cross River, the coastal highway will include a spur to the north-central part of the country.

From Victoria Island, Tinubu also performed the virtual inauguration of the design and procurement for the 1,000km Sokoto-Badagry Highway.

This project is expected to connect Sokoto to Badagry in Lagos State and pass through Kebbi, Niger, Kwara, and Oyo States.

In addition, Tinubu virtually inaugurated the design and procurement for the 461km Enugu-Abakaliki-Ogoja Road, which will traverse Benue, Kogi, and Nasarawa States, terminating at Apo in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

The President, who is in Lagos to inaugurate projects as part of activities marking his administration’s first anniversary, also performed the virtual inauguration of the reconstruction and rehabilitation of 330 roads and bridges across the six geo-political zones of the nation.

The President commended the Minister of Works, David Umahi, for being diligent and for his efforts toward the qualitative execution of the strategic coastal highway project.

He also applauded the Chairman of Hitech Construction Company, Ambassador Gilbert Chagoury, and Ronald Chagoury, whose company is handling the project, for being worthy stakeholders and for believing in the future of Nigeria.

“Together, we worked to tame the Atlantic, and we turned a disaster into a great asset of value. We lost weight and took insults, but eventually, we tamed the Atlantic.

“We achieved our goals,” the President said, recounting how the indigenous company successfully executed a project to prevent the Atlantic Ocean from encroaching on critical sections of the Lagos shoreline.

“Today is my day to boast. The deal is done. The dream is realisable. The determination to build a nation of prosperity is possible. We said we would build this road, and we are determined to do it.

“Do not be afraid. We will do this road, and it will be a success for Nigeria, and we will do even more of this,” the President said.

Tinubu said the project would ensure that future generations have a good landmark and memory to treasure while serving as a good precedent set for others to follow in the timely provision of world-class infrastructure.

“We have a road that will outlive all of us here. That is how to build the future. This project is more than a mere road. It is a symbol of hope, unity, and prosperity.

“It will connect communities, bring prosperity to people, and create opportunities for millions of our people. For our nation to excel, we just have to be bold and courageous in our endeavours,” the President said.

Listing the benefits and opportunities to be created by the construction of the 700km road, the President said it would provide direct employment for thousands of people and indirect jobs for tens of thousands.

He added that it would open economic opportunities for millions of people, fast-track economic development, provide 30 million people with improved access to production and marketing centres, and facilitate the free movement of people.

He said the project would also complement the expansion of the country’s maritime industry in the wake of the recent decision by the United Nations to grant Nigeria an extension of its continental shelf by an additional 16,300 square kilometres.

“We must take advantage of these opportunities,” the President said, adding that the establishment of more export processing zones along the coastal states must be a priority for the country.

Umahi announced that the President had directed that sections 3 and 4 of the Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway project should commence from Akwa Ibom and Cross River States respectively.

Emphasising that due process was followed in awarding the contract for the transformative project, the Minister described Tinubu as a visionary and courageous leader.

Umahi disclosed that over 40 new projects are ongoing across the country and that all compensations up to kilometre 6 of the Lagos-Calabar project have been paid.

The Oniru of Iruland in Lagos State, Oba Abdulwasiu Lawal, whose domain the road will course through, assured the President that the community would ensure the removal of all bottlenecks.

He stated that his people have made painful sacrifices for the project to materialise and called for adequate compensation for them.

In separate remarks, three Governors – Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos; Mr Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq of Kwara, and Mr Hope Uzodinma of Imo described the wide-ranging support from sub-nationals as a vote of confidence and support for the landmark project.

30m citizens to benefit from Lagos-Calabar Coastal Road – Tinubu

President Bola Tinubu, says the Lagos-Calabar Coastal Road will provide direct employment for millions of people and benefit over 30 million citizens.

Tinubu said this at the official commissioning of the construction of the 700km Lagos-Calabar coastal highway and the design procurement of 1000km Sokoto-Badagry super highway on Sunday in Lagos.

He said that the project which, aligned with the Renewed Hope initiative, would grow value and explore Nigeria’s abundant assets.

“This 700 Km superhighway, a 10-lane road project represents a crucial step in our efforts to enhance connectivity, facilitate economic growth and improve the quality of life for our people.

”It will provide direct employment for millions of people across coastal states and over 30 million citizens will benefit and have access to production and marketing centres.

“This project is more than just a road – it is a symbol of hope, unity, and prosperity.

”It will connect our communities in nine states, foster trade and commerce, boost tourism and create new opportunities for generations to come,” Tinubu said.

He, however, noted that Nigeria was experiencing a temporary period of difficulty.

The president emphasised the urgency of investing in long-lasting infrastructure projects that would benefit people for many years to come.

Additionally, Tinubu said that the coastline infrastructure was directly linked to the Lekki Free Trade Zones, Deep seaports and Dangote Refinery.

This, he said, was the reason Nigerians should harness the full potential of the project, aimed to bring millions of opportunities to communities and coastline states.

Tinubu assured citizens that his administration would speed up efforts to accelerate industrialisation, saying that concerted move were being made to boost industrial growth, drive economic prosperity and create employment opportunities for Nigerians.

He acknowledged that in the midst of challenges, the country was taking bold efforts and endeavours to be successful and have good landmark of infrastructure to treasure.

Tinubu lauded the industrial efforts of Aliko Dangote, Hi-Tech Construction company and Chagoury Groups in navigating the stormy waters of business in Nigeria and Africa.

Earlier, Senate President, Godswill Akpabio, described the 700 km Lagos-Calabar coastal road as a “bold infrastructure policy” that would earn Tinubu a second term in office.

He named some of the policies implemented by Tinubu as the student loans and the rehabilitation of several dilapidated roads.

This policies, he said, had earned him several accolades as the greatest infrastructure leader in Sub-Saharan African economy.

Akpabio advocated the amendment of Bureau of Procurement Act in budgetary allocation.

He assured that the implementation of the acts into the budget, would allow full completion of projects in due time.

The projects would be fully completed in due time and address issues of abandoned roads, dilapidated roads and moribund infrastructure in the country.

The Minister of Works, Sen. Dave Umahi, said the ministry was committed to driving the project to completion.

He added that human face was put to the project, to save telecommunication infrastructure, submarine cables and critical national assets in the country.

This, Umahi said, informed the decision to realign routes to save workstation and business infrastructure.

Umahi restated that compensations had been paid up to Kilometer six.

He applauded President Tinubu’s efforts in bridging the gap of infrastructure deficit in the country.

Also, Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State, described the highway project as an “audacious step” of the Renewed Hope Agenda.

According to him, its a step to facilitate regional markets, strengthen economic diversification and drive local content development for bold and transformation projects.

Sanwo-Olu said, ” the renewed hope is here, we can now have handshake across regional corridors and geopolitical zones, to populate business growth.”

He stressed that the project would build new conversations for tourism, foreign direct investment and strengthen transformation projects across federal and sub-national levels.

He commended the efforts of the president in bringing generational change and re-tooling the nations economy.

Similarly, Gov. Dapo Abiodun of Ogun, said the coastline project was an indelible legacy of President Tinubu’s administration.

He said that the project would deepen investment drive, improve Return On Investment and connect emerging markets to link the six-geopolitical zones in the country.

Abiodun said infrastructure was the key enabler of economic growth, and the Lagos-calabar concrete road, the only coastline road in Nigeria, would take off in the financial capital of Lagos State, into eight other states in the country.

Underscoring the commitment of the Renewed Hope Agenda, Abiodun remarked that the coastline project would reduce travel time, reduce man-hour lost and boost industrial sector growth to provide employment.

He, however, commended the efforts of the president for resolving all the issues of coastline realignment, gazetted routes and right of way.