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 Second Niger Bridge ready in Q3 as project hits 83% completion

Second Niger Bridge ready in Q3 as project hits 83% completion


The Second Niger Bridge, which was billed for completion this month but was delayed due to the COVID-19 lockdown and EndSARS protests, will be ready in the third quarter of this year.

The Guardian learnt that as the Federal Government prepares for its inauguration before the end of the year Chief of Staff to the President, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, top government officials and lawmakers will visit the site on Friday, February 25 to assess the level of work on the project.

A director in the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing and an engineer for the Second Niger Bridge, Adeyemo Akanji, told The Guardian during a tour of the site that the entire project was about 83 per cent completed.

He said: “The bridge is 91 per cent completed, which means that all the sub-structure works have been completed and the super structure is ongoing. We have just 20 metres to link the entire bridge of 1.6kilometres. We have commenced the finishing works, such as parapet and other auxiliary works on the bridge.

“All things being equal, from the third quarter of the year, the project will have been completed and ready for use. On completion, the ministry is thinking of a temporary connection with an access road around Oko in Delta State, immediately after the old tollgate for immediate use to link Onitsha and Owerri.

Resident engineer of the project, Oluwaseyi Martins, said: “At the Anambra end we have achieved about five kilometers asphalted road and three kilometers at the Delta State end, making it eight kilometers of the expected 10.3-kilometre road.

“At the moment, work is ongoing on the Owerri interchange. We have achieved asphalt and surfacing on one side of the carriageway. The bridge is already being linked and we have primed stone-based on one side, while work is ongoing on the other side.

“Work is also ongoing on the sleep road and loops of the interchange, where we have achieved asphalt on two of the loops. As the director said, from all indications, we hope to complete all works by the third quarter of this year.”

There are three navigational channels on the bridge, where it is higher, with a depth of about 15 metres, something close to five-storey building. It is higher and wider than the 1st Niger Bridge, especially at that point, and deeper too, to allow easy passage of large ships.

The main phase of the project is the bridge, the other being access roads to connect Asaba with the bridge and from Onitsha, through the Obosi-Enugu Road on kilometer 17.

Contracts for the access roads from around the Delta State and Obosi to the Onitsha-Enugu Expressway on the other side to link the bridge have been awarded to Julius Berger Plc.

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