Residents of Enterprise, Bladen Hall, Good Hope and Lusignan can now easily traverse their communities after several roads were upgraded to the value of $248.9 million.
Minister of Public Works, Bishop Juan Edghill and Minister of Local Government and Regional Development, Nigel Dharamlall, recommissioned the roads at a simple ceremony on Thursday.
The modernisation of the Good Hope and Lusignan road network, including works to a 58-foot bridge, cost $120.9 million, while the upgrading of Enterprise and Bladen Hall road network cost $128 million.
At the commissioning, Minister Edghill told residents the PPP/C Government believes in development that provides equal access and opportunity. He said the roads were upgraded through the miscellaneous roads programme.
While the construction of major roads are important, the Minister said, the development of miscellaneous roads is where citizens get the best satisfaction in service from Government.
“The real crux in the delivery of services to the people and bring them satisfaction and comfort is in our miscellaneous roads programme.
“When you hear me talk about all these major projects and the New Demerara Harbour Bridge and linking Guyana and Suriname with the new bridge for you, the individual who live in the village, that is just news. But when you get your road in your village, for you, the Government did something. So, we understand the importance of the miscellaneous roads programme.”
Minister Edghill also reminded the contractors that while they have to make a profit, they must be partners in development.
“When a contractor is given a job, it is not just about making money, but we must also see the big picture of development that is coming to communities.”
Additionally, he pointed out that during the Government’s first year in office over $698 million was invested in the Mon Repos/La Reconnaissance and the Buxton/Foulis Neighbourhood Democratic Councils.
Some $375 million and $323 million were spent in the respective NDCs.
In the Mon Repos/La Reconnaissance NDC, Minister Edghill said several roads were rehabilitated. They are Cemetery Road in Good Hope at a cost of $18 million; First Cross Street, Lusignan, at a cost of $28 million; Second Cross Street, Lusignan at $11.2 million and Factory Road in Mon Repos at $11 million.
In the same NDC, contracts have been awarded for the rehabilitation of Fifth Cross Street in Good Hope at $16 million, and Third Cross Street, Section C in Mon Repos at $20 million. A contract valued $150 million was also awarded to upgrade the main access road in Good Hope and for the construction of a concrete bridge.
Over at the Buxton/Foulis NDC, several streets in Enterprise were upgraded: Pay Office Street at a cost of $13.8 million, Market Street, $13.8 million, Charlotte Street, $24 million and Park Street, $7.6 million. Davi Street in Bladen Hall was also rehabilitated at a cost of $8 million.
Several contracts were also awarded for the rehabilitation of Fourth Cross Street in Nonpareil at $21.1 million, Mandir Street in South Nonpareil at $31 million and Sideline Dam in Buxton at $76.5 million.
Meanwhile, the Local Government Minister said the upgrading of the road networks is part of Government’s strategy to enhance livelihood.
“When the infrastructure in our villages is improved, then we are going to have better standard of living. We are going to have easier means of ingress and egress.
“We are going to have property development in our villages and I believe that with what plans we have moving forward, today is a seminal day where we are showing the rest of Guyana that this Government is committed to all the villages of our country,” Minister Dharamlall said.
The Minister noted that last year, over 200 roads were done under the miscellaneous roads programme. He also said in 2021, over 500 roads would be upgraded.
Enterprise resident Mr. Bhoowal Chaitu told DPI that prior to the upgrades the roads were dilapidated.
“I think the contractors did a very good job because these streets are very low and the amount of stones, they threw here build the street,” he said.
Ms. Ashana Outram, 25, said the roads in Enterprise had been in a deplorable condition since she was a child.
“I remember riding to the primary school, all these streets they were like big holes and during the rainy season it was crazy.
“And to see it now, I am really appreciative of the fact it is done and it is in this condition.”
Other residents also expressed gratitude to the Government for the road works, noting that it would allow them to about their business faster.