FG awards contract to rehabilitate Lagos-Sagamu road to Julius Berger

By The Citizen

The Federal Government has awarded a contract for rehabilitation and reconstruction of the Lagos-Sagamu Expressway to Messrs Julius Berger Nigeria Plc (JBN).

The company's Managing Director, Mr. Wolfgang Goetsch, who announced the development to shareholders at the 43rd yearly general meeting of the firm held at the Shehu Musa Yar'Adua Centre, Abuja, said mobilisation to site will start in 10 days' time and actual construction work will begin. It was learnt that the project will cost N17 billion and the scope of work will include provision of three additional lanes in either direction between Lagos and the Sagamu Interchange, making it five lanes; provision of associated facilities for the security and welfare of road users, as well as ensuring a free flow of traffic.

Julius Berger had earlier handled section one of the road from the old toll gate in Lagos to Sagamu in Ogun State, while RCC rehabilitated the section two from Sagamu to Ibadan as part of a palliative measure by the Federal Ministry of Works. With the latest development, RCC may also be awarded the contract for the section two.

The deal for the reconstruction of Lagos-Ibadan Expressway for the Build, Operate and Transfer (BOT) lasting for 25 years, earlier awarded to Messrs Bi-Courtney Highways Services Limited (BHSL), was revoked last year. The government accused the firm of serially breaching the terms of the contract for the 125-kilometre road signed by it and the Federal Government on May 26, 2009 under the late President Umaru Musa Yar'Adua's administration.

The JBN boss said the challenge before the company is to ensure that motorists and other road users don't bear the brunt of the road project, by adopting a sustainable traffic management plan.

According to Goetsch, the government has also given Julius Berger a letter of intent for the Second Niger Bridge under the Public Private Partnership, and kick-started soil test and other engineering design while undertaking a financial close. He said a consortium that included a South African firm participated in the bidding for the project.

At the event, the company declared a profit after taxation of N8.02 billion for 2012 as against the N4.411 billion recorded in 2011 and approved a dividend payment of N2.50 per share, amounting to a total gross dividend of N3 billion.

Chairman, Board of Directors of the company, Air Vice Marshal Mohammed Nurudeen Imam, said the amount is a marked improvement over that of 2011 where a dividend of N2.40 per share was approved for an ordinary share.