From Sola Ojo, Kaduna
The lawmaker representing Kaduna South Federal Constituency (APC – Kaduna) in the House of Representatives, Mukhtar Ahmed Monrovia, had clarified his decision to ‘divert’ a constituency road project initially meant for Zango Road, Sabon Gari Ward to Bahago Road, Television Ward, as necessary.
The first time lawmaker who spoke through an aide, Abu Sufyan, said he diverted the project because the ongoing Kaduna State government’s urban renewal road project was already addressing the Zango road where the constituency project would have been constructed, hence, the need of diverting it to Bahago road in Television, located within the same Kaduna South local government area of the state.
Monrovia was responding to an enquiry posed to him by the Research Officer, Kaduna Youth and Community Development Volunteers (KAYCDEV), Khalifa Musa Muhammad, who demanded an explanation behind the diversion of the N60m (inclusive of 7.5 VAT) worth constituency road project.
Available documents show that the project was approved by the Ministerial Tenders Board of the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing at its 11th 2020 meeting held on Monday, March 15, with no clear cut on the distance or the location where it should be constructed.
This development had prompted this correspondent to visit Bahago Road, Television Ward, where the road was diverted for the first-hand confirmation or otherwise of the existence of such.
According to some locals in the area, the road with a distance of about 600 metres and drainages on both shoulders, was hitherto in bad shape and had been abandoned until it was reconstructed lately by the lawmaker.
A resident and a business owner who has been living in the area for eight years, Winner John, said: ‘Honestly speaking, this road used to be one of the worst in Television here. It was a terrible road to trek, ride or drive across especially when it rained.
‘So, when this man came to do this road, everyone was happy – including those that are trekking, those that are riding bicycle or motorcycle and those who drive cars. We don’t even want to know who did the road. Our concern is that God will bless the people who did it. We are enjoying the road now because the road is perfect,’ she said.
Another business owner in the area, Sunday Nwazurike, corroborated Winner’s view, saying: ‘Before, nobody could drive pass through the place. But now, it is in good shape and that has helped the people who are in the area especially those who have been spending a lot of money to fix their cars due to the bad state it was before now.’
Other constituents in Sabon Gari captured in the project signboard were not happy because the lawmaker did not inform them about the diversion until they sighted the signboard with the name of their political ward in another ward though within the same constituency, which to them contravenes the principle of Open Government Partnership (OGP) which to which Kaduna State subscribed.