Senate backs re-introduction of toll-gates on federal highways

Posted by News Express | 25 October 2016 | 1,829 times

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Nigerian Senate has resolved to re-introduce the toll gate policy, together with other relevant stakeholders, and device efficient ways to produce a holistic package to generate adequate funds for roads maintenance across the country.

The Senate equally hoped that the money that would be realised must be judiciously used, in order to restore confidence in the masses.

The resolution followed the motion moved during Tuesday plenary, by Senator Suleiman Nazif of Bauchi North, on the need for the re-establishment of Toll Gates on Federal Highways'.

Leading the debate, Senator Nazif observed that the deplorable state of roads in Nigeria is killing, noting that the main purpose of toll gates is for revenue generation to maintain the federal highways as government cannot fund road construction and maintenance alone.

He recalled that toll gates were abolished by former President Olusegun Obasanjo in 2004, who advocated that revenue for road maintenance should rather be generated from an increased pump price in petrol back then.

Supporting the motion, Senate Leader Ali Ndume also maintained that it is necessary because financial resources are limited and road maintenance is important.

Senator Biodun Olujimi of Ekiti South also supported the motion, explaining the need for transparency on the toll collection in order to achieve the purpose of the tolling.

While lamenting the state of federal roads across the country, another lawmaker, Senator James Manager of Delta South, admitted: “Roads in Nigeria are bad. From Trunk A to Trunk B to Trunk C, they are very bad.”
 He charged the appropriate committee to go and understudy road construction and maintenance in developed nations and replicate it in Nigeria.

Deputy Senate President, Ike Ekweremadu, while running a history leading to the abolishing of toll gates in 2004, He harps on the need for best policy to manage it now, adding that "if such proper policy is in place, it will even bring in private investors into road construction and maintenance.

Other Senators who backed the motion include Senator Bukar Abba Ibrahim; Senator Abdullahi Gumel and Sabi Abdullahi.

•Photo shows Senator Suleiman Nazif.

Source: News Express

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