The Senate has said that the Federal Roads Maintenance Agency (FERMA), needs annual budgetary allocation of four hundred billion Naira (N400,000,000,000), to effectively put the 26000km road network across the country in good shape.
The Chairman, Senate Committee on FERMA, Senator Gershom Bassey, stated this in Abuja at the weekend while briefing journalists on the 2021 budget report of the agency, which he submitted to the Appropriations Committee of the Senate on Friday.
He noted that the N38bn allocated to FERMA in the 2021 budget for capital projects was grossly inadequate, considering the dilapidated states of most of the nation’s roads, urging the Executive to evolve plan based budgets for roads maintenance in the country.
The lawmaker also stressed the need for the Federal Government to concession federal roads for effective maintenance, suggesting that government should come up with a concession modem, and then consider setting up a trust fund to complement the concession.
Bassey further observed that 80% of goods were being moved by roads from one part of the country to another, which put a lot of pressure on the roads, with attendant loss of lives and goods in the process, arguing that more funds should be given to FERMA to address the challenges of road maintenance in Nigeria.