The road tax to be introduced by the Federal Road Maintenance Agency, FERMA, designed to provide it with funds to keep the highways in order is to take effect soon.
Managing Director and CEO of FERMA, Gabriel Amuchi, who disclosed this yesterday in Abuja at the conclusion of a three-day workshop to prepare staff of the agency for the work envisaged between now and December, also said a roads abuse committee to check those who spoil roads and make motoring difficult had been constituted and started work at zonal level.
He said work towards the implementation of the five per cent road tax otherwise known as road user charge had reached an advanced stage and should begin soon. Already, he said, all the agencies connected with its formulation and introduction had given their approval, adding: “It will do a lot to enhance our operations. I hope it will be done in a short time considering the work being done in that regard.”
On the road abuses committee, Amuchi explained that the group, which would comprise representatives of the police, the army and Federal Road Safety Corps, among others, would tackle such offences as indiscriminate digging of roads by those laying pipes or cables, defacing of road signs with posters and dumping of refuse on the highways.
The FERMA boss, who assured that all federal highways would be in good condition by Christmas, stated that strategies for effective road maintenance were adopted at the workshop where participants were prepared to respond to the challenges that follow heavy rains and their effects on the roads.
He said while the percentage of federal highways that were in good condition two years ago was just about 25, that had now been reversed with over 80 per cent of such roads now in motorable condition.
According to him, FERMA would sustain the tempo against road failures and that its engineers would remain at their duty posts during the Yuletide to ensure Nigerians had a good ride.
Amuchi said that critical dual carriageways such as Abuja-Kaduna-Kano road, the Benin-Onitsha road, the Ninth Mile-Obolo-Afor-Otukpo road would enjoy special intervention during the period.
On the traffic gridlock on the Lagos-Ibadan expressway, he said it might be a result of the ongoing repairs by the contractors.
Posted by SirVic for wetopup(News Laboratry)