Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway to Boost 30 Million Businesses, Says Tinubu

Nigeria Must Make Difficult Changes - Tinubu

President Bola Tinubu announced that the 700km Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway would significantly improve access for 30 million people to production and marketing centers, fostering economic growth and development. The statement was made during the project’s flag-off event in Lagos, marking Tinubu’s first year in office.

Tinubu highlighted the project’s benefits, including direct employment for thousands and indirect employment for tens of thousands during its construction. He emphasized that the highway would catalyze economic opportunities, stating, “The road will provide direct employment for thousands and indirect employment for tens of thousands, opening economic opportunities for millions.”

The Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway, extending through nine states with two spurs leading to the northern states, began construction in March. Despite the project’s scale, it faced criticism for its timing and the demolition of buildings along its path. Minister of Works David Umahi disclosed that 750 houses marked for demolition would receive N2.75 billion in compensation, though stakeholders argued this was insufficient.

President Tinubu appealed for public understanding, especially from those affected by the project, assuring fair compensation. “This government is compassionate and will offer succor through compensation,” he stated. Tinubu described the highway as a symbol of hope, unity, and prosperity, connecting communities, boosting trade, and enhancing tourism.

Tinubu compared the highway to Ireland’s Wild Atlantic Way, projecting significant tourism and economic benefits. He commended the Ministry of Works and private investors for their efforts, urging collaboration to ensure the project’s success. The 10-lane road, expected to link Lagos to Cross River through several states, will feature concrete pavement for durability.

A committee, including representatives from the ministry, Lagos State, affected communities, and other stakeholders, was established to review and assess compensation for landowners. The committee’s primary responsibilities include verifying claimants’ eligibility, assessing affected properties, and determining appropriate compensation amounts.

Tinubu reiterated the project’s transformative potential, emphasizing its importance in enhancing connectivity, facilitating economic growth, and improving quality of life. “The project is more than a road; it is a symbol of hope, unity, and prosperity,” he said, signaling the start of construction and the rehabilitation of 330 roads and bridges nationwide.

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