TUE 16 MARCH, 2021-theGBJournal- Edo Governor, Mr Godwin Obaseki, on Tuesday intensified call for upward review of 13 per cent derivation formula, saying it had remained inadequate for development of the South-South.
Obaseki made the call while speaking with newsmen after inaugurating Effurun-Otor-Ovwor-Olomu bridge and the rehabilitated 34-km Otu-Jeremi-Okwagbe Road in Ughelli South Local Government Area of Delta, executed by Governor Ifeanyi Okowa.
He said that the peculiarity of the environment in the South-South had made it quite expensive to develop infrastructure, especially roads, in the area.
The governor said that with the quality of projects being executed by Okowa across Delta, it was obvious that he would do more with enhanced funds.
He pointed out that the inaugurated bridge and road projects would enhance the economy of the communities and also connect them to other parts of the state.
“The construction of this bridge and roads will lead to the development of the communities and I must commend the governor for connecting the Urhobos and Ijaws with the Okwagbe road,” he said.
In his remarks, Okowa said that the Effurun-Otor-Ovwor bridge was one of the major requests of the people when he visited the communities in 2015.
He said that the vision of his administration was to connect Delta communities with roads, bridges and other basic amenities, adding that his administration had awarded contracts for no fewer than 500 road projects, with many already completed.
The governor commended the contractor of the projects, Obakpor Engineering Limited, for its engineering prowess and assured that he would deliver on the Ovwor hospital project in 2022.
“When I came to inspect the bridge while under construction, it was a very exciting moment even more exciting than what I saw today because I saw a traditional ruler walk on a wooden bridge to come and meet me on the other side of the bridge.
“Today, I believe that my joy knows no bounds because we have truly brought joy to the people of Ovwor-Olomu/Effurun-Otor.
“As the Commissioner for Works did say, we are currently continuing on the Trans-Warri road with several bridges and it is our hope that we will complete that project leading to Ode-Itsekiri in the course of our tenure.
“The Ayakoromo bridge is still undergoing construction, the Orere bridge in Ewu kingdom has just started.
“We made a promise last year and the project was awarded this January and it will cost the state government over N9 billion.
“The Benekuku/Kwale bridge has gone very far and it is about 75 per cent completed. We are hoping that by the end of the year, we should be able to commission that bridge.
“That bridge leads across to all the Agip facilities in Ndokwa East Local Government Area where we also have the gas plant and the power plant.
“We have also started the Isheagu/Ewulu bridge that links Isheagu town with Ewulu in Aniocha South Local Government and we will continue to do the best we can for our people,” Okowa said.
Commissioner for Works, Chief James Augoye, had said that the Effurun-Otor-Ovwor bridge was first awarded in 1979, re-awarded by OMPADEC in 1991 and abandoned, and later awarded in March, 2017 by the Okowa administration while Otu-Jeremi-Okwagbe road was awarded in March 2016 and completed in 2019.
Augoye said the bridge which was 100 metres and approach road of one kilometre was one of the many bridges that the administration embarked on.