Jul 23, 2021 News
Kaieteur News – The Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) signed four contracts yesterday for the supply and delivery of assorted materials for fabrication of cane-transport punts or barges. Those deals were closed with David Persaud Investments Limited and Gafsons Industries Limited totalling $284,157,050.
Following the closure of the Rose Hall Estate by the previous administration in 2017, approximately 120 of the cane-transport punts that belonged to that estate were transferred to the Albion Estate. The punts that remained at the estate were not maintained, as such, they have deteriorated to the point that they cannot be salvaged.
To commence grinding operations in 2022, the Rose Hall Estate will require 450 new cane-punts to accommodate its daily expected output. GuySuCo routinely budgets for the replacement of aged cane transport punts, at a rate of 10% per annum, given that each new punt has an expected useful life expectancy of ten (10) years.
Similarly, the National Drainage and Irrigation Authority (NDIA) signed a contract with VR Construction Inc. for the sum of $84,561,100 for the supply of a pontoon barge. Additionally, the drainage authority also signed a contract with Guyana Tractor & Equipment (Guytrac) totaling $60,000,000 for the supply of two long-reach hydraulic excavators.
With the acquisition of these pieces of equipment, which will be operated in the Pomeroon River, Region Two, the NDIA will now be better equipped to execute drainage works required in swampy pegasse soil, which under normal conditions is difficult to operate an excavator without the risk of the machine sinking. These machines will also be used to assist the NDIA with executing a blocked drainage programme within the Pomeroon area.
Agriculture Minister, Zulfikar Mustapha, said that the contracts being signed were critical to advance the government’s efforts to develop Guyana’s agriculture sector.
“Close to $430 million in contracts are being signed for critical works in two critical entities. The NDIA, over the last three months, has been under a lot of strain in terms of getting our country back to normalcy following the onset of the May-June rainy period, which resulted in flooding in many parts of the country.”
“Furthermore, the President, Dr. Mohammed Irfaan Ali, would’ve committed to the people of Pomeroon to deliver a pontoon with excavators so that we can constantly desilt the mouth of the river. We know that that area is prone to flooding especially when we have heavy rainfall or high tides. We are therefore making the necessary investments to mitigate flooding in those areas,” Minister Mustapha said.
“As it pertains to GuySuCo, I’ve said many times that the government made a commitment to the people of this country that we will reopen some of the closed sugar estates so that we can create employment and contribute to the country’s GDP and the economy as a whole. Those of you who were awarded contracts for the supply of various materials for GuySuCo must understand that those activities are critical to the timely reopening of that estate. People are looking forward for us to deliver and you will have to play your part,” Minister Mustapha stated.
The official also reminded contractors that the Ministry has no intention of extending contract deadlines, adding that substandard works will not be accepted.
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