The Enugu end of the Enugu-Port Harcourt highway suffered a bridge collapse on Wednesday, and the Senate has since pushed the Federal Ministry of Works to begin rebuilding the bridge quickly.
The order came after a proposal was passed in the Senate on Wednesday.
The motion was introduced by Senator Osita Ngwu (PDP-Enugu) and co-sponsored by Senators Victor Umeh (LP-Anambra), Kelvin Chukwu (LP-Enugu), and Okechukwu Ezea (LP-Enugu).
Ngwu, in his leading debate, brought up the unfortunate collapse of a section of the Enugu-Port Harcourt freeway overpass on September 25; he did, however, point out that nobody was hurt in the incident.
According to him, the bridge not only connects the Onitsha-Enugu highway to the Enugu-Port Harcourt expressway, but it also serves as a significant route for commuters traveling between Port Harcourt, Aba, Umuahia, and Abakaliki.
He complained about the way that roads are currently maintained.
According to the Senator, if early warning signals of the collapse had been identified, fixes may have been made to prevent the tragedy.
He predicted that the temporary rerouting of traffic into the downtown area would make an already dangerous traffic situation in the city even worse.
Ngwu voiced his alarm that the collapse of the crucial flyover bridge posed a threat to the economic and social well-being of the local population.
The legislator warned that the socioeconomic issues facing not only Enugu State, but the entire South -East zone, could be exacerbated if rehabilitation of the important public facilities was delayed.
The bridge, in the eyes of Senator Ezea, was a national asset.
He stated that all petroleum products, fertilizer, and food items were transported from Port-Harcourt to other regions of the country via the bridge.
He was worried that the collapsed bridge would have a negative impact on economic activity in the area.
APC-Ogun Senator Adeola said that the collapsed bridge was now one of Nigeria’s most pressing infrastructure problems.
Adeola said that if the Senate’s resolution is to have any effect, it must be included in the 2024 budget.
Abdullahi Yahaya (PDP-Kebbi) encouraged senators from Enugu State to submit a detailed report on the state’s crumbling road and bridge infrastructure to the Senate’s ad hoc committee on crumbling roads and bridges so that the issue can be adequately reflected in the 2024 budget.
As a result, the Senate has requested that the federal government provide the Ministry of Works with emergency intervention funds to repair and maintain vital roads around the country before the forthcoming dry season.
Senate President Godswill Akpabio said in a statement that the damaged bridge would undergo repairs and that funding for a complete rebuilding effort would be allocated.