Paul Yovo The Nigerian Institution of Structural Engineers (NISTRUCTE) has called on the nation to switch over to the use of concrete for road construction. The engineers made this submission at their just concluded 28th Annual Conference in Abuja, with the theme: Structural Engineering Excellence in an Environment inundated with Collapse.
President of the Institution, Engr. Samuel Ilugbekhai, said “concrete pavements have been found durable and last longer than bitumenous roads” According to him: “The time has come when Nigeria should step up the use of concrete for roads especially now that the country has increased its potential to produce cement at lower prices and even exporting to other countries.’
He regretted that the country’s dilapidated roads have become death traps and the economic cost to the nation is becoming too high. In his speech also, Vice President of the Institution, Engr. Eddy Atumonyogo, stated: “Concrete pavements are very good because they last longer and can be used for busy roads, especially in the state capitals. Speaking in the same vein, the Deputy President, Engr. Oreoluwa Fadayomi, said concrete pavements have been in use all along but that the difference now is that the conversation may shift to adopting it to replace bitumen totally.
Engr. Aliyu Aziz Abubakar, a Vice-President of the Institution said the viability of concrete pavements should be looked at as the country’s manufacturing sector now produces cement more than the average national need.
Speaking earlier, the Chairman of Sea Dredge Construction Company Engr. Ayo Folorunsho said concrete roads are the future and the way to go, even though the cost may be high on the short run, it will be economical on the long term given the increasing capacity of cement companies in Nigeria. He said more people die from bad roads than collapsed buildings, urging the country to take the issue of concrete pavements more seriously.