Sep 24, 2020 News
The previous A Partnership For National Unity + Alliance For Change (APNU+AFC) administration had expended millions on the Sherriff/ Mandela Road Expansion Project but despite this, the project is far from completed.
Instead, the People’s Progressive Party Civic (PPP/C) government will have to expend a further $134 million to complete works there.
Construction has restarted after being halted back in April and Guyanese can now look forward to the road being paved with asphalt before the end of the year.
Public Works Minister, Juan Edghill branded the project “badly mismanaged” as the issue came to the fore yesterday during the considerations for the 2020 National Budget Estimates at the Arthur Chung Conference Center.
Minister Edghill told the House that the project should have already reached finality as the contract was awarded since December 2017. Sinohydro Corporation Limited, a Chinese Contracting firm, was awarded the US$31.03 Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) contract.
While the COVID-19 pandemic was cited as one of the contributing factors, the non-compliance with a host of environmental standards led to the IDB halting disbursements to the project.
With the contractor back on board, the project has reached a considerable way and could be completed by the end of 2020.
Further, Edghill stated that assurances were given to the contractor that the Guyana Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) is prepared to facilitate special charter flights if the issue of getting specialists into the country due to the COVID-19 restriction arises.
“We will not use COVID-19 as an excuse for non-delivery of services to the people of Guyana, they deserve to have the road and we are working to have that,” he said.
It was reported that the total distance of roadway to be constructed is seven kilometres and would involve road widening, reconstruction of failed sections and asphalt overlay.
The initial plan had also indicated that from that point, to the Mandela Avenue-Hunter Street junction, there were going to be provisions to cater for four lanes of traffic.
But back in September 2019, the company was hauled before the Ministry and warned due to several infractions. The previous government was also on the verge of terminating the contract.
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