Don't panic, NIger bridge won't collapse - FG assures motorists, commuters
He described the story as fable and complete falsehood, urging members of the public to disregard the rumour.
Speaking to newsmen in Onitsha, Anambra State, Ajani said people with no engineering background and building construction were deceived by movements by the bridge ocassioned by the design to enable the bridge cope with loads it bore daily.
He explained that the Bridge which is 1.4 kilometres is standing on roller and rocker support which allowed for longitudinal thermal movement and movement side ways to ensure its proper balancing.
Ajani argued that such a huge structure could not have been rigidly constructed, otherwise it will crack by vibration, stressing that the roller support and rocker support allowed the bridge to take care of vibration.
“Besides these, the bridge undergoes regular maintenance. Structurally, it is safe.
Ajani who later took newsmen to the bridge in company of Federal Controller of Works in Delta state, Moshood Jimoh to witness first hand the vibration, said the bridge had undergone regular maintenance, insisting that there was no cause for worry.
He said, "When I was alerted by the false rumour, my team carried out physical inspection of the existing Niger Bridge on July 15, 2020 and found there was no cause for alarm.
"The movement of the bridge being talked about is noticeable only when vehicles are stationary on the deck on one lane and heavy trucks are passing by on the opposite lane
"The bridge has been regularly maintained. Between 2005 and 2006 a renowned construction company Setraco Nig. Ltd. carried a comprehensive maintenance of the bridge when some of the main bearings that were damaged were replaced.
"Also in 2013 up to 2019 a consortum of Messrs. Matiere-Johnson Consortium Ltd carried out a comprehensive maintenance of apart from the surface but underground and under the water inspection of the pile foundation.
Both Ajani and Jimoh expressed disappointment over the activities of touts and law enforcement agents whose activities encourage traffic gridlock on the Bridge.
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