Dec 25, 2017 News
Residents and commuters can now travel in and out of Bagotville, West Bank Demerara with ease following the re-commissioning of the Bagotville Bridge on Saturday.
Ministers of Public Infrastructure, David Patterson and Annette Ferguson; Region Three Executive Officer (REO), Dennis Jaikaran, and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of GAICO Construction, Komal Singh, unveiled a plaque at the bridge commemorating its opening on Saturday.
Minister Patterson told the gathering that a $92M contract for the emergency project was signed with GAICO Construction and General Services Incorporated on September 15, last. He said works commenced on September 21 and were completed at the end of November, two weeks earlier than the scheduled December 15.
Two additional $7M contracts were also signed for the provision of steel.
The Public Infrastructure Minister urged the residents to take great care of the new bridge especially during the holidays. He cautioned them not “to drink and drive.”
Minister Ferguson also appealed to the residents to care the bridge which she observed, carries new safety features.
“We at the Ministry of Public Infrastructure are aware of the discomfort you experienced over the past months but, nevertheless, you stayed with us and you ensured the reality of the new bridge here in Bagotville.
“I know that the previous bridge did not serve you well but you made your plea and the Ministry delivered,” she said.
Minister Ferguson noted that the bridge allows for easier mobility, free travel and less discomfort. She disclosed that the construction of the bridge also created employment for over 12 persons from the community.
REO Jaikaran described the event as a significant one for the region noting that the government not only promises new and improved infrastructure but delivered on its’ promises.
He said that “a bridge like this was able to be completed within six months, not only because of the effectiveness of the contractor but because of good governance of the government in the country.”
Jaikaran said that the bridge new features are important because “we are moving in a direction where safety comes first.”
The REO used the opportunity to highlight other infrastructural projects slated for 2018. He said that the region will benefit from $470M in capital works which would include roads, bridges and buildings.
“Between capital and recurrent next year, we are going to benefit from at least $5B investment…. We were in a state of distress now we are in a state of happiness in two years. Our government has been supporting this region tremendously and we have had many interventions from the Ministry of Public Infrastructure apart from our regional budget,” Jaikaran explained.
GAICO’s CEO, Komal Singh who is also a son of Bagotville, praised the government for responding promptly, after conducting a review of the bridge with his team.
“The Minister (David Patterson) was able to represent the case to the government who responded timely,” Singh said, adding “…I am sure we have many more developments in our community that we will see from the government so we can have a better life.”
The CEO noted that from the 12 villagers employed for the bridge construction, ten are currently employed with GAICO.
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