Work on the N1.09 billion Asaba road rehabilitation being executed under the Direct Labour Road (DLA) in Delta has been stalled due to non-payment of compensation.
The reconstruction of the 2.8kilometre road was awarded by the state government to Deux Project Ltd. in October 2011 and was expected to be completed in 12 months.
The government had awarded three other roads under the programme at the cost of N3.05 billion.
The roads are: Avenue, Dennis Osadebay Road; Federal College of Education Road; and Festus Okubor Road.
Work is yet to commence on any of these roads, although many structures on the road have been marked for demolition to pave the way for the reconstruction work.
The owners of the structures to be demolished are insisting on compensation before the buildings are pulled down.
“They marked the fence and part of our hotel for demolition but we have told the company officials not to attempt the act until they have paid compensation,” a Hotel manager, Billy Ogah said.
The state’s Commissioner for Works, Funkekeme Solomon, admitted that compensation was yet to be paid to owners of properties marked for demolition to pave way for the project.
He blamed the delay on evaluation of the compensation claims.
Solomon explained that many existing properties would be pulled down due to the expansion of the width of the road from 7.3 meters to 10 metres.
He said that it was resolved that compensation would be paid before the demolition of the structures.
He, however, said that the committee charged with determining adequate compensation to be paid to “genuine claimants” was yet to submit its report.
“But I have been informed that the report is ready and will be submitted any time from now,” he said.
“As soon as it is submitted and we agree, the compensation will be paid so that work can begin on the project. It is the only one lagging.”
Speaking on the scope of the work, Solomon said “the project includes raising the road base, introduction of crushed stone base and surfacing, using two layers of asphalt.
“Concrete side drain and a pedestrian walkway will be provided on both sides, and discharge channels shall be constructed to route flood water from DLA Road to the underground drain along Jesus Saves Road,” he said.