Mixed reactions trail Kwara’s N200m asphalt plant launch


inT he recent launch of the Kwara State-owned N200 million asphalt plant by Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed in Ilorin, has been received by residents with mixed feelings.
While some residents expressed optimism that the launch of the plant would ease the rehabilitation of roads embarked upon, especially in the metropolis, by the Kwara State Road Maintenance Agency and the state’s Ministry of Works and Transport, others expressed reservations, alluding to the numerous failed promises in the past.
Governor Abdulfatah had, while commissioning the plant, promised a complete turnaround of roads in all parts of the state, promising that in a couple of days, Kwara residents would start plying pothole-free roads.
Speaking with our correspondent on the importance of the plant, a civil engineer, Tunde kareem, described the asphalt plant launch as innovative and visionary.
Kareem added that the plant, if well managed, should help in reducing the cost of maintaining and constructing new roads in the state.
“I will like to commend the government for this initiative. With the revenue shortfall ravaging the country, awarding road maintenance and construction contracts is financially unviable as it amounts to shear wastage.
“With competent professionals managing the asphalt plant, it will reduce drastically the cost of road maintenance and construction in the state. It may also help generate funds into the state’s coffers. All that is needed is sincerity of purpose,” he said.
But a social commentator and lawyer, Lanre Abdul, described the commissioning of the asphalt plant as nothing spectacular and not worth celebrating.
Abdul said, “The asphalt plant launch isn’t something we should be celebrating. What we want to see is a smooth drive round the state capital from Asa-Dam/Offa garage road, which was constructed few years back, to Tanke, Sawmill, Oko-Erin, Muslim cemetery, New Yidi Road, among others.
“These roads are all in, to put it mildly, a despicable state. Even Taiwo Road that used to be a smooth is now ridden with potholes. This government has promised and failed several times. So, I’m not that optimistic of its sincerity, I stand to be proved wrong,” he added.