Atiku to Tinubu: Reveal cost of Lagos-Calabar highway project


…Queries how it got the design, right of way in 7 months

The Presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the last election, Atiku Abubakar, has dared President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to disclose the full cost of the Lagos-Calabar highway project.

Atiku said in a statement on Tuesday that the Tinubu administration could not continue to keep silent on how much of public funds would be spent on the project at a time Nigeria was still facing dire economic challenges.

The former Vice President had through Paul Ibe, his Media Adviser (and not Media Assistant as erroneously stated by Bayo Onanuga) questioned the Tinubu administration’s decision to award the contract to Gilbert Chagoury’s Hitech without a competitive bidding.

He had also wondered why the Tinubu administration released N1.06tn for the pilot phase or 6% of the project, which begins at Eko Atlantic and is expected to terminate at the Lekki Deep Sea Port.

The statement signed Tuesday in Abuja by the Special Assistant to the former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, read in part, “The Tinubu administration cannot continue to respond to public inquiry with insults. They must come clean on this project because Nigerians deserve to know the truth. I, therefore, present six posers to the administration.

“1. How much is the total cost of the Lagos-Calabar coastal highway?

“2. Why is the project being funded by the Nigerian government despite being a PPP?

“3. Why is the project taking off from Chagoury’s Eko Atlantic?

“4. Why is N1.06tn being spent on the pilot phase, which is just 47km?

“5. Why did the N1.06tn not get the approval of the National Assembly?

“6. Why wasn’t there a competitive bidding for the project?

“7. Finally, how did the Tinubu administration get the design as well as the right of way in just 7 months, since it claims the past administration of Goodluck Jonathan and Muhammadu Buhari never touched the project?”

Atiku asked the Tinubu administration to, in the spirit of the Freedom of Information Act, respond to the questions line by line instead of taking the mundane and jejune route of “insulting their way out of every inquiry.