World Bank, AFD Contribute $3.6m Fund For RAMP II

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The World Bank and the French Development Agency (AFD) have agreed to sponsor the second phase of Rural Access Mobility Project (RAMP II) with 3.6 million dollars.

Mr Ifeanyi Okereke, the Development Communication Officer of RAMP, made this known to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Friday.

He told NAN that the World Bank provided 2.6 million dollars, while the AFD contributed one million dollars.

He said that the project was co-funded by the World Bank and the AFD with the Federal Government.

“The Federal Government provided the counterpart funds in the form of project Preparatory Funds to prepare the states for participation in RAMP.

“The Federal Government through the Federal Ministry of Finance signed for the loan on behalf of the states and stands as a guarantor for the states.

He told NAN that four new states? – Enugu, Osun, Adamawa and Niger – were selected to participate in RAMP II.

He noted that they were selected through a contested process, adding that 34 states and the FCT that were not in RAMP I participated.

Okereke added that the RAMP II states were selected in pursuance of the Country Partnership Strategy.

?“The RAMP II includes the rehabilitation and maintenance of 500km rural roads in each participating state, so that at least 25 per cent of the road network will be in good condition at the end of the project.

“The aim of RAMP is to develop an adequate, safe, environmentally sound and economically efficient rural transport system.”

Okereke noted that states in RAMP I were Kaduna and Cross River, and added that the projects in the states were sponsored by the World Bank and the African Development Bank.

“We are to construct and rehabilitate a total of 472 km of roads network and 132 numbers of river crossings in Kaduna.

“The total cost of the project is 72 million dollars and is sponsored by the World Bank.”

He, however, explained that the project cost in Cross-River was 39.40 million dollars and it involved rehabilitation of 474 km of rural roads.

Okereke added that a pilot rural road maintenance scheme had commenced in Osun.

“The pilot rural maintenance scheme is being carried out on a 12 km road along Iwo-Pataara involves the engagement of a 12-man maintenance gang.

“The gang has been trained on how to carry out routine maintenance and the reason behind these initiatives is to be able to develop capacity of the local people, contractors and implementing agencies.’’

He emphasised that RAMP adopted a maintenance strategy to ensure longevity of the projects being carried out.

He added that with the scheme in place, direct employment would be made available to about 2000 people in the participating states of RAMP II.

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