The Federal Government on Tuesday issued a notice for the commencement of the procurement process for the 12 federal highways mapped for concession under the Highway Development Management Initiative.
Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, issued the notice in Abuja and unveiled the portal that was developed to ensure that the procurement process was seamless.
The 12 highways so far mapped out for concession by the Federal Government have a combined length of about 1,963km and represents less than 5.6 per cent of Nigeria’s 35,000km federal highway network.
The 12 routes for concession under the pilot phase include Benin-Asaba, Abuja-Lokoja, Kano-Katsina, Onitsha-Owerri, Shagamu-Benin and Abuja-Keffi-Akwanga.
Others include Kano-Shuari and Potiskum-Damaturu, Lokoja-Benin, Enugu-Port Harcourt, Ilorin-Jebba, Lagos-Ota-Abeokuta, and Lagos-Badagry-Seme border.
Fashola said, “These 12 roads were carefully chosen to ensure that each of the six geopolitical zones are covered.
“The initial capital investments that we foresee is something in the order of N1.13tn and the employment potentials are an estimated 50,000+ direct jobs and 200,000+ indirect jobs.”
On the procurement portal, the minister said it was developed to ensure competitiveness and guarantee transparency, adding that it would serve as the interface with the public and manage the HDMI from procurement to implementation.
He explained that the portal would give access to relevant documents, news updates, videos, ensure the management of the public private partnership procurement process and the process of approvals and permits, among others.
“Therefore, to those writing letters of inquiry, making offers of interest on the HDMI, offering to provide services like tolling, weigh bridge, rest houses, etc, we are sorry we cannot respond to those letters in order to maintain the integrity of this process and to keep the playing field level,” Fashola stated.
He further noted that currently, the government was executing over 700 different contracts for the rehabilitation and reconstruction of over 13,000km of roads and bridges across all the 36 states including the Federal Capital Territory.
He said the HDMI was an effort by government to mobilise private capacity, resources and entrepreneurship into the Nigerian highway sector.
Fashola said the initiative would hopefully convert roads from just social assets into assets of commercial opportunities and enterprise.