Apo-Karshi Road: Senate Blasts, Summons contractor

By: Wisdom Acka

The Senate Committee on the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) on Tuesday, lampooned the contractor handling the Karshi-Apo road over failure to complete the much awaited project at agreed time after failed promises.

The Committee Chairman, Sen. Smart Adeyemi, who led other members and Ministers of the FCT on a tour of some priority projects as part of Senate oversight function, said it was a shame for an indigenous construction company to betray the trust of FCT Administration, the National Assembly and Nigerians by awarding it the contract.

Recall that the Apo-Karshi road project was awarded to M/S Kakatar’ Nig. Ltd in 2011, with the completion period of 20 months.

The Chairman stated that because the company acknowledged, it got funding for the project by the current FCT Administration, there was no reason for it to continue making excuses for delivering the project on schedule.

Adeyemi regretted that a contract that was awarded in 2011 has not been completed for several years; describing it as a failure.

According to him, Apo-Karshi road always appear in FCT budget and was giving the Senate headache, and must be looked into, even as he asked the contractor to appear before the Senate next week Thursday for explanation.

“If I submit the budget before the floor of the National Assembly my colleagues will take me up on it, they will be answering questions and I don’t want to be confused,” he said.

“You should be a shamed of yourself and the company, the fund has been provided for the work, why excuses again?”he queried.

The Chairman added, “I remember when this job started and I had reasons to come here in either 2013 or 2014, you gave us the same promise. When an indigenous company betrays the trust, you justify why local firms should not be patronaged”.

His words: “If I am the Minister, I will revoke this job, and ask them to refund the government. If you can’t do the job, why should you accept it? There is no reason again to continue with the company.”

Chief Site Engineer Ezekiel Panam, while speaking on behalf of the Managing Director, attributed the delay in completing the project was due to increase in price of items.

According to him, the project was awarded in 2011 when the prices of materials were not high.

“No Administration has funded this project as the current one has done. Part of the delay was funding, but since you came on board, you settled it. This job was awarded in 2011, now prices of materials are not the same, so we are trying our best to deliver,” he lamented.