The Federal Ministry of Works and Housing plans to hand over management of 12 federal highways to private entities in order to ensure regular maintenance of the country’s road network.
The agreement would allow private corporations to install toll gates on the 12 motorways and collect income, which they would then use to maintain the roads on a regular basis.
This information can be seen in a document received by Newsmen from the Federal Ministry of Works and Housing in Abuja yesterday.
Benin-Asaba, Abuja-Lokoja, Kano-Katsina, Onitsha-Owerri, Shagamu-Benin, and Abuja-Keffi-Akwanga are among the 12 highways to be concessioned under the Ministry’s “Highway Management Development Initiative.”
Kano-Shuari, Potiskum-Damaturu, Lokoja-Benin, Enugu-Port Harcourt, Ilorin-Jebba, Lagos-Ota-Abeokuta, Lagos-Badagry-Seme Border are some of the others.
According to the ministry, the roads are part of the HDMI’s pilot phase, which will be operated by private sector investors under a Value-Added Concession, or VAC, structure.
The 12 highways account for just 5.6 percent of the country’s 35,000-kilometer federal highway network, or 1,963 kilometers.
According to the paper, private sector investment on the roadways would amount to N1.34 trillion, with 50,000 direct employment and 200,000 indirect jobs being generated as a result of the concessioning of the motorways to private operators.
The ministry explained that it has already obtained the approval of the Infrastructure Concession and Regulatory Commission, ICRC, to go ahead with the implementation of the HMDI which incorporates the concessioning of the highways and the right of way to private sector operators.
Explaining the objectives of the HMDI, the ministry said: “The objective is to develop an eco-system along the federal highway network by bringing multi-dimensional resources of skills, manpower, finance, technology, and efficiency into the National Highway governance.
“Ultimately, this home-grown initiative will be the lasting solution to the development and management of federal highways by introducing order, accountability and profitable entrepreneurship to the operation, management, and maintenance of Nigeria’s 35,000 km federal highways.