David Umahi, minister of works, says construction of the collapsed Enugu-Port Harcourt bridge will commence on today.
Umahi spoke on Thursday when he and Peter Mbah, governor of Enugu, visited the site.
“We have promised him (Mbah) that this week, we are going to do palliative work on this existing or standing bridge,” Umahi said.
“We will also start reconstruction of the collapsed bridge courtesy of Mr president.
“Also, graciously, Mr president has, through the 2023 supplementary appropriation act, released some money that we can use to start the rebuilding of these two bridges and the other bridge by the pipeline products marketing company (PPMC) deport at Emene as well as a flyover by that location.
“I know the governor is very eager to build that federal road, the Enugu-Abakaliki Road.
“He has concluded the design and is going to start in earnest. But, while he is doing that, we will be doing the flyover at the depot (Eke Emene) to complement it. Therefore, it is a partnership, and it is a healthy one.”
Umahi said Mbah has been “insisting” that he ensures that work commences on the bridge in ernest.
“It shows that leadership is commitment to the people of Enugu state and the entire Nigeria. So, the chain is as strong as its weakest link,” the minister said.
“Mr president said we must come, and in the next 10 days, I am sure that we will reinforce the standing bridge on one lane, and we will start to use it.”
In his remarks, Mbah thanked President Bola Tinubu and Umahi for the “interest and the speed at which they have attended to this challenge that is before us”.
“As we know, the minister was also here with us to inspect and identify areas of quick intervention the last time we came here,” the governor said.
“And I am happy now to announce to you that the minister has come here to inform us again that work is going to commence here today.
“So, there is going to be the repair of the existing lane, and hopefully, within the next 10 days, our people should be able to use one of the lanes.
“Then effectively around the middle of next month, the full work on the bridges on both lanes would commence.”