FG urged to commence work on Lagos-Ibadan Expressway
FG urged to commence work on Lagos-Ibadan Expressway
A socio-economic group in Ogun State, the Egba Economic Summit has called on the Federal Government to resume the reconstruction of the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway to prevent it from deteriorating further.
The road awarded at a cost of N167 billion by the Federal Government has the Lagos-Sagamu stretch of it being redeveloped by Julius Berger, while the Sagamu-Ibadan axis is being handled by RCC where work has ceased since President Muhamadu Buhari was sworn in.
According to the President, Egba Economic Summit, Mr. Ayobami Biobaku, the Federal Government should recall the contractor handling the Lagos-Sagamu interchange stretch of the road to improve economic activities in the area and to reduce the agony of users of the road.
He added that it was also important for the Ogun State government to contract a construction company to do palliative rehabilitation of some sections of that road that have deteriorated since the main contractor left the site.
Biobaku said, “We noticed that the contractor has moved out of site, leading to dilapidation of the road to the deplorable state it was in about two and a half years ago.
“The bad road adversely affects the socio-economic life of our people and negates the purpose of reconstructing the road. Good roads are indispensable to the economic growth of any community where they are built,” he added.
The deplorable state of the road, according to Biobaku, has made it difficult for the state government to carry out some developmental projects in that axis of the state.
He said the state government plans to develop that area of the state, which hosts mostly industries, but has been unable to do so in the last four years because of the slow pace of work on the expressway.
Biobaku said it was now very difficult to predict travel time on that road, adding that travel time between the former toll gate at the Lagos end and the Sagamu interchange, before work on the road got stalled, was barely 30 minutes but that presently it could take between one and three hours to cross that same stretch.
He said the traffic is made a little bearable by officers and men of the Federal Roads Safety Corps who are always there to ensure there is traffic flow.
“All of us belong to the Federal Republic of Nigeria and we are free to reside in any part of the country. My believe is that, whether a project is delivered by the federal government or the state government or local government, what Nigerians need is basic infrastructure,” said Biobaku.
“Therefore, good partnering by all the tiers of government, federal, states and local governments and good spirited individuals will make us deliver the dividends of democracy to our people.
“And I assure you that we will continue to work together. With over 250,000 vehicles plying the road daily, the road is an important economic artery that connects the nation’s economic nerve centres. It a major link to the important nerve centres to evacuate goods and ease movement of people. The infrastructure is of great socio economic importance, not only to Nigeria but also to the people of Africa,” he said.
40% of Africa’s real estate business done in Nigeria –Chapel
Nigeria accounts for about 40 per cent of the real estate business done in Africa an indication that the property business in Nigeria would still be lucrative despite wobbling economic indices, Mr. Herbert Chapel, a property business expert from the United Kingdom has said.
Chapel, who is in Nigeria to develop his property business, said that research has shown that Nigeria is the choice destination for property business in Africa. According to him, all the offices dealing with estate related businesses in the UK are having their eyes on Nigeria.
“I can tell you Nigeria controls about 40 per cent of real estate business done in Africa. Nigeria has got the population, it has largest economy in Africa but still needs property development to crash the deficiency in housing accommodation for the citizens,” said Chapel. “If the tempo continues, a lot of things would go in for the country, because people who would be here for business would also bring funds and experts in various sectors and this, you know is another way of giving unsolicited training to the populace,” he added.
In the same vein, going by Knight Frank’s recent Africa Report 2015, international investors are increasingly looking for opportunities in Africa’s real estate markets. The report said that in the past one year, property searches from outside Nigeria increased from under 30 per cent to well over 45 per cent of all searches on its website.
According to another report, following rising demand for commercial space and housing for middle-income and young professionals in Nigeria, the nation’s real estate market has continued to grow with the sector now valued above N8.4 trillion.
According to a report by Agusto & Co., the Lagos sub-segment of the market accounts for at least 40 per cent of the Nigerian market.
Growth, the report revealed, continues to be driven largely by market residential and commercial properties in Lagos, Abuja and Port Harcourt. The report estimates the market to grow by an estimated average of 10 per cent in 2014 and 2015 respectively. The Lagos real estate market, which has evolved in the last decade, continues to report significant growth in both the residential and commercial sub-segments. The key growth factors include population growth, economic growth, rapid urbanization, rising consumer disposable income and the introduction of mortgages.
Experts in the real estate sector have also declared that huge opportunities abound in the Nigerian property market, in spite of the major challenges confronting the sector. Experts, who are drawn from the mortgage sector, real estate development and estate surveying profession, spoke recently in Lagos, at a one-day seminar organised by International Real Estate Federation (FIABCI) Nigeria, with the theme: ‘Mortgage Finance and the Nigerian Property Market: Challenges & Opportunities’.
They opined that the property market is the future of the Nigerian economy because it is capable of stimulating the other sectors of the economy, anchoring their optimistic views of the property market and mortgage finance sector on the country’s population, demand and the economic capacity of the people.
The realtors however noted that for the potentials of the sector to be fully achieved, the bureaucratic bottlenecks, dearth of basic infrastructures and costly land administration in the country must be adequately addressed.