Justice Rita Ofili-Ajumogobia of a Lagos Federal High Court, will today, Monday, hear of a suit filed by a lawyer, Kabir Akingbolu challenging the decision of the Federal Ministry of Works and the Federal Roads Maintenance Agency, FERMA, to stop the Lagos State Government from completing the construction of Alausa overhead bridge being part of the Lagos-Ibadan expressway.
Akingbolu, in an originating summons filed before the court, listed the Minister of Works, Power and Housing, Babatunde Fashola as co-defendant to the suit.
Incidentally, Fashola was the Lagos State Governor as at the time the construction work on the bridge was put on hold by the Federal Government.
The State Government had embarked on the construction work in a bid to ameliorate the vehicular traffic situation and to also reduce drastically the amount of accidents occurring as a result of pedestrians crossing the expressway.
However, the decision to halt the construction was said to have been predicated on the insistence by the Federal government that the road is a federal road, and that the Lagos State government had no right to commence the construction work on it.
Akingbolu, who condemned the action of the federal government, and described it as an aberration and a total abuse of power, stressing that it was unfortunate that the Federal Government has failed to fix the Lagos-Ibadan expressway despite the hardship and loss of lives being experienced on the road.
The lawyer also recalled in the originating motion that recently, former President Olusegun Obasanjo was a victim of accident on the road largely caused by the deplorable state of the road, adding that the road had become “so deplorable and a truly cringe worthy death trap that claims the lives of several people.”
As a result of the deplorable state of the road, the lawyer lamented that people, including himself, now spend several hours on the road as a result of traffic gridlock spanning especially from Warewa axis all the way down to the Redemption Camp and beyond.
The lawyer is therefore urging the court to determine that given the great economic and geo-political importance of the road as it connects Lagos, which is the business capital of Nigeria to other parts of the country, whether the failure of the defendants to put it in good, safe and motorable condition is not a breach of their statutory duties.
The lawyer is specifically asking the court to order the defendants to put the road in good, safe and motorable condition with immediate effect and an order directing the Federal Government and the bodies faced with the responsibility of maintaining federal roads to resume works on the construction of Alausa overhead bridge with immediate effect.

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