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Senator Engr. David Umahi, the Minister of Works, embarked on a visit to inspect the damaged bridge located at KM30+000, situated between the recently constructed Artisan flyover and the NNPC Mega filling station along the Enugu Expressway in Nigeria’s South East region.
In the early hours of September 25, 2023, at about 12:00 AM, a bridge located within the larger project, “Rehabilitation of Enugu/PH Expressway section 111: Enugu/Lokpanta Expressway,” suffered a catastrophic collapse. This incident impacted a single section of the Enugu-bound carriageway, resulting in significant damage to both the superstructure and substructure.
The Minister of Works, joined by Enugu State Governor His Excellency Peter Mba and a group of highway engineers, undertook a thorough inspection of the site where the bridge had collapsed.
During his on-the-spot evaluation, the Minister observed the state of the bridge deck, the condition of its components, including the rear wall and expansion joints, and the year of its construction, which was in the early 1980s. He ordered a thorough structural integrity assessment for the second and third spans of the Enugu-bound road.
The Minister reassured that the Federal Government would take swift actions while awaiting the final report. He expressed his dissatisfaction with the appalling condition of Nigerian roads, despite the substantial yearly expenditure on road construction, and expressed optimism for a brighter future.
He reiterated that it would not be business as usual under his leadership. The Ministry of Works must prioritise discipline, patriotism, and fiscal responsibility.
Meanwhile, a growing number of individuals and organisations dedicated to national development, private sector entities, representatives from the road transport industry, media establishments, and fellow Nigerians have come forward to express their wholehearted backing for the fiscal discipline initiatives and public service enhancements introduced by the Honorable Minister of Works, His Excellency, Senator Engr. David Nweze Umahi, FNSE, FNATE, CON, GGCEHF.
Just recently, a notable figure in nation-building, Dr. Bolaji O. Akinyemi, an Apostle, and the Convener of the Apostolic Round Table (ART), along with being the Chairman of the Board of Trustees for Project Victory Call Initiative (PVC-Naija), voiced his opinion that Senator David Nweze Umahi is the most outstanding Minister of Works that Nigeria is likely to ever have. This statement was made during an interview with a National Daily, where Dr. Akinyemi discussed the state of the nation and the considerable achievements of the Tinubu administration in its initial 100 days in power.
he said, “You see, Dave Umahi is the best Minister of Works we may ever have, he travelled from Abuja to Benin, spending 14 hours only to know how bad the road is so it can be fixed”
It is noteworthy that on the day prior, September 28, 2023, at the Headquarters of the Federal Ministry of Works in Abuja, the Honorable Minister held a gathering with a contingent of Ministry employees. The Minister reaffirmed his dedication to accomplishing two key missions in his relationship with the workers: enhancing their welfare and promoting discipline within the civil service.
He affirmed that the small disturbance within the Ministry’s premises, which subsequently became a social media trend, was a divine plan designed to capture the attention of all workers regarding the imperative for an attitude shift within the Ministry of Works.
It was observed that while a portion of the workforce had demonstrated discipline and professionalism, there was a need for others to adopt the new mantra and recognize that the old way of doing things was no longer acceptable.