• Okays N10bn for creation of 10 rice mills

The federal government wednesday approved a total of N64.1billion for further construction on what it described as section one on Lagos – Ibadan express way.

It also approved N4.5billion for the reconstruction of Subaila-Falala-Bini-Baku-Bauchi Road which Kano with Bauchi State.
Briefing journalists at the end of a six-hour FEC meeting in the State House, the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, said the approved additional construction on Lagos-Ibadan expressway would include the building of pedestrian bridges and toll plazas which he said were not part of the original design for that road.

Fashola also said procurement was also being pursued for further works on section two of the road which he said would equally be presented to the council for approval when the procurement is secured.

“Council approved the award of Subaila-Falala-Bini-Baku-Bauchi Road that connects Kano and Bauchi States at the sum of N4.578 billion. Council also approved additional works on section one of Lagos-Ibadan expressway.
“Council also approves additional works on over 43.6 kilometers for N64.108 billion which covers pedestrian bridges, toll plazas for that section so as to accommodate the changing nature of that road.

“Since its conception, so many new structures, religious institutions, factories, universities, increased human activities have come up along that road. The inherited design didn’t provide for these at all and also to modify the quality of bitumen, polymer modified bitumen, in order to deal with the heavy cargo that passes through that road.

“The first section is handled by Julius Berger. The second section under RCC which covers over 80 kilometres will come to council to incorporate similar works including drainage works when we finish the procurement,” he said.
In his own briefing, Minister of State for Agriculture, Senator Heineken Lokpobiri, said the council also approved the establishment of 10 rice mills in 10 states at the cost of N10.7billion.

“Today, FEC approved the establishment of ten very large rice mills to enhance the milling capacity of rice value chain in the country. Few years ago, it was reported that this country needs a minimum of 100 large mills. As at today, we have about 21 but the federal government in its wisdom decided that today, we should approve the establishment of 10 new rice mills in 10 states at the total cost of N10.7 billion.

“This will be given to the private sector to manage which will be paid back within a given time frame as will be agreed between the Bank of Agriculture and the rice mills. The state will be ten. You know in Nigeria, over 30 states are growing rice.
“In today’s memo, the ten rice mills will be located across the six geopolitical zones including Kebbi, Zamfara, Benue, Kogi, Bayelsa, Anambra, Kaduna, Niger, Ogun, Bauchi. The capacity of the rice mills is 100 tons per day each,” Lokpobiri said.

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