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Despite economic potential, N1.2bn bridge projects remain abandoned in Kwara

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Approaching the dusty end of Ilorin-Igbeti highway on a motorcycle, the eerie silence and overwhelming bush surrounding the old rickety Ohan bridge in Kwara state, gawked at the onlooker.

Getting closer, however, the deterioration of the Ohan bridge becomes more conspicuous. The metallic planks used as an alternative replacement to the washed-off asphalt have also broken, and for that fact, no vehicle has been able to drive across the bridge for a long period of time.

The Mooro bridge, which lies on the same route, is only a little better than the Ohan bridge. Mooro is a little less wrecked than Ohan bridge. So, vehicles are still trying to ply the road, but with much caution; because its structure also depicts an appearance of a rusty bridge with structural deficiencies that are said to be life-threatening.It was visible that the bridge had been mended severally with metallic materials either by the state government or transport workers. The width of the irons holding Mooro bridge together had been outrageously reduced such that two vehicles cannot drive across it at the same time. There were also some new concrete pillars supported with wooden slabs to indicate there is ongoing construction.

Drivers halted for oncoming vehicles to get across before the other would move on to avoid accidents and prevent traffic congestion on the bridge. Close to a temporarily fixed area of the bridge, there were other semblances of work to suggest a bridge being reconstructed despite its pillars and granites thickly surrounded by long-grown bush shrubs. It cuts the picture of a government project neglected over an extensive period of time.

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