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No proof Lagos-Calabar coastal road would have 180 bridges 

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Claim: Different social media users said that the ongoing Lagos-Calabar coastal road will have about 180 bridges and 90% of the bridges are located in the Niger Delta area.

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Since its commencement, the 700 km-long Lagos-Calabar coastal road has generated more controversies than any other infrastructural project under the Tinubu-led administration. According to comments from some social media users, there are existing fears that the project will halt after the Lagos axis is completed, while other rumour mongers claim that there is an ulterior motive behind the construction. 

However, the demolition of structures at the $200 million-worth Landmark Beach Resort, in Oniru, Victoria Island, sparked more outcry than others in the court of public opinion. 

A Twitter user, Chude Nnamdi, claimed he saw a snippet of the construction project plan. He said, “The road has a total of 180 bridges, of which 90% of the bridges are in the Nigeria Delta part of the road. This is way [beyond] what I imagine (70-80 bridge).”

He also added that the project’s complexity displayed the government’s priority, questioning the rationale behind budgeting the country’s limited resources to construct 180 bridges in a desolate area amidst outcries to repair bad roads in the country.

As of May 15, 2024, the post has gained more than 3,600 reactions, 1,400 retweets, and 580 comments since it was posted on May 5, 2024. About 326 Twitter users have bookmarked the post, and it has gained more than 875,000 views.

A commenter, Tonia (@Tonia_dimma), expressed disdain for the project’s trajectory. She stated two factors behind the government’s willingness to proceed with the construction: “This project is targeted to destroy some people’s property [and] they want to embezzle Nigeria funds and finally use them for campaigning come the next election.”

Another commenter, The Emperor (@i_jandor), criticised the works minister, David Umahi, saying there’s more to the project than meets the eye. 

“Upon all the bad roads that are begging to be repaired, it is the one with 180 bridges they considered very important… Umahi is not telling us why the road is more important than most roads that have become death traps all over the country,” he said.

The virality of the claim, as seen here, here, here, here, and here, made DUBAWA fact-check the information.

Verification

We conducted advanced keyword searches to obtain details about the project and found a few. As of the time this report is filed, the project is expected to pass through eight states in the southern region, starting from Lagos and moving through Ogun, Ondo, Delta, Rivers, Bayelsa, and Akwa Ibom. The endpoint is Calabar in Cross Rivers State.

According to Mr Umahi, the 700-kilometre-long highway is expected to cost about N15 trillion, as each kilometre will cost around N4 billion. For the first phase, at a cost of about N1.06 trillion, the project will involve a 47.47 km dual carriageway with five lanes on each side and a train track in the middle.

However, the full scope, phasing, and timelines for the entire project still need to be detailed further. The Landmark Beach Resort– one of the enterprises that suffered demolition– complained that they do not have access to the complete road plans. They were not consulted on the highway alignment or engaged in discussions about the project’s Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA).

This implies that the full technical plans and design documents are not readily accessible to the general public.

Conclusion

Based on the provided search results, the full detailed plan for the Lagos-Calabar Coastal Highway project is not publicly accessible, and there is no sufficient evidence on the number and cost of bridges.

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