•Say work to be completed in April
Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, minister of Works and Housing, Alhaji Babatunde Fashola, and his Labour and Employment counterpart, Dr Chris Ngige, inspected work at the second Niger Bridge yesterday.
At the Onitsha-Owerri Road Interchange of the link road to the bridge, the trio also walked the entire 1.6km length of the bridge to the Asaba, Delta State end.
The Managing Director of Julius Berger, Mr. Lars Ritchter, who conducted the dignitaries through work at the bridge, said the construction firm would complete work on April 2.
The delegation also included representatives of the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority (NSIA), Anambra and the Delta governments.
Briefing journalists, Fashola reiterated the completion date saying, “April is the completion date. Earlier, I said it would end in February or, latest, end of the first quarter.”
The minister added, “Before now, some people said there was no bridge, but now we are walking on the bridge. This is real now. Plus or minus, when we cross the Ts and dot the Is, we will complete it as promised – 11 kilometres and 12 kilometres on both sides of the bridge.”
Fashola also mentioned that the high tension transmission line across the bridge would be relocated in April because they were too low on the bridge.
“Power will be shut down for two weeks to enable the generating and transmission companies as well as the ministry of power to work seamlessly on the project,” he stressed. “We plead that those affected will cooperate as nobody will be shut out permanently.”