Edwin, who made this known during an interview with select media men over the weekend, said it will be to the benefit of Nigerians and even the Federal Government to embrace the option of using concrete for roads in the country. Aside from being very cheap, he said concrete roads are more durable and that its maintenance cost is near zero. According to him: “We are pushing for Nigeria to do a concrete road. It is cheaper to do a concrete road that will last 50 years than to do a bitumen road. It will also help in eliminating corruption because if you go and build a bitumen road, it will have to be adequately maintained unlike a concrete road that is very durable.”
He further explained that concrete roads have a long life span, ranging to fifty years or even more compared to asphalt roads that can barely last ten years or twelve years. Furthermore, unlike asphalt roads, a concrete road does not require frequent maintenance and patching.
Concrete roads, according to him, also have the advantage of not getting deflected under the wheels of loaded trucks, this makes it consume 15-20 per cent less fuel if compared to asphalt roads. It also has resistance to automobile fuel spillage and extreme weather.
Meanwhile it would be recalled that Dangote Group has commenced the construction of concrete roads in various states across the country, particularly in Lagos, Bauchi, Kogi, Kaduna and Ogun states.
A source in the Dangote cement company said: “We are very happy at the moment. We can categorically state that we are in more than five states across the country already constructing roads. The reception has been wonderful. State governments are beginning to see the need to embrace concrete roads and we are very happy at the way things are currently going,” the source said.
Executive Director in the Dangote Group, Eng. Mansur Ahmed recently at the Summit of the NESG in Transcorp Hilton also urged the three tiers of Government to embrace the use of concrete roads in Nigeria. He said concrete roads make more economic sense for a country like Nigeria, as the use of Asphalt has left the roads in deplorable conditions. Noting that asphalt roads are no longer in vogue in developed climes, he said the construction of concrete roads is faster and can last for half a century compared to Asphalt. According to him, in the construction of concrete roads, the cement raw materials are readily available while Asphalt is imported into the country.