Toll collections on some designated dual carriageways across the country have been reintroduced, according to the Federal Executive Council.
This is because diplomatic, military, and paramilitary vehicles, as well as tricycles and motorcycles, were exempt from the system.
Babatunde Fashola, the Minister of Works and Housing, made the announcement on Wednesday at the end of the Federal Executive Council’s weekly meeting at the Presidential Villa in Abuja, which was presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.
After the Olusegun Obasanjo administration demolished all toll plazas on federal roads across the country in 2003, the decision was made almost two decades later.
Fashola said his ministry provided a memo to the council, which approved the reintroduction of tollgates on the 35,000km of federal roads with dual carriageways.
These roads, he explained, made up only 14.3% of the entire 35,000km stretch of federal roads that were dual carriageways and would be subject to tolling, with vehicles paying between N200 and N500 per trip depending on their brand, while diplomatic, military, paramilitary, tricycles, and motorcycles would be exempt.
Dual carriageways accounted for only 5,050 kilometers of the entire 35,000 kilometers, according to the ministry.
“So the overall network of roads eligible for tolling on the federal network today, assuming we wanted to start today, which we aren’t, will be 14.3 percent of the total network,” he stated. As a result, 85.27 percent will be ineligible for tolling.
The majority of those dual carriageways have alternate roads, but they are single carriageways, which is why we left them.
Some bridges are the only exception to single carriageway, and they are stated in the regulation.”
Following the FEC’s approval of the return of toll plazas on certain routes, the minister stated that the ministry was now working on mechanisms to establish when the tolling system will go live.
“The Ministry of Works and Housing presented a policy memorandum for federal highways, bridges, and tolling policy approval, as well as a rule that would establish a legal basis for the tolling policy,” he stated. As a result, we’ve gone another step forward. To be clear, tolls will not be implemented tomorrow. So let’s get that out of the way.”
Fashola emphasized that the open tolling system would not begin until the affected roads were passable, and that operational agreements with appropriate government entities would need to be established.
The Minister further stated that the tolls collected would be utilized not only to maintain the roads but also to build new ones, with the toll system being electronically controlled for transparency.