The Ekiti State Government has ordered the immediate reconstruction of the link bridge in Olorunda Community in Ado Ekiti, the state capital.
The Deputy Governor, Otunba Bisi Egbeyemi, during an assessment visit to the collapsed bridge on Monday sympathised with residents and assured that work would begin on the site on Tuesday.
A statement by the Special Assistant (Media) to the Deputy Governor, Odunayo Ogunmola, said residents of the community were delighted by the government’s prompt response and intention to begin immediate reconstruction.
The Deputy Governor who was accompanied by the contractor handling the road project, Mr. Rudolph Najjar and officials of the Ministry of Works led by the Permanent Secretary, Mr. Dele Agbede, said the government would ensure that the bridge is restored as soon as possible.
The bridge which linked Olorunda with Olorunsogo and Adewumi neighbourhoods of Ado Ekiti collapsed as a result of heavy rains and the attendant massive flood in the early hours of Monday.
The situation left thousands of residents stranded with pupils unable to go to their schools while civil servants, artisans and traders could not reach their destinations.
The residents revealed that they had been managing the bridge for about four years with self-help efforts but welcomed the permanent reconstruction by Governor Kayode Fayemi administration.
Otunba Egbeyemi said: “The collapse of the bridge happened as a result of the heavy rain and we have seen it. That is why Governor Kayode Fayemi asked me to come and see things for myself and I am here accompanied by the contractor handling the road project.
“By the grace of God, work will commence here tomorrow (Tuesday). In fact, as of today, the contractor in charge has ordered materials to be used for the work.
“I have given a directive that quality materials including hard stones be used and laying of asphalt. This government does not want life to be unbearable for the masses.”
The president of Olorunda Community, Pastor Tayo Omolola, praised the state government for the prompt intervention which he said has restored the hope of the people living in the area.
Pastor Omolola said the collapsed bridge served as the link between Olorunda and the adjoining communities of Olorunsogo and Adewumi saying the collapse has brought despair to residents.
He said the people had made representations to the government on the condition of the bridge before its eventual collapse saying it had been the major bridge in use as the second one had been washed away by flood in 2019.
The community leader urged the contractor and his workers to ensure that a quality job is done on the project.