The continuation of the paved road from the airstrip junction to the North West Secondary School area in Region One (Barima-Waini) is at a standstill and according to Regional Chairman Brentnol Ashley, no effort is being made to commence works on the project.
Ashley, in an interview with Inews on Saturday, said that to date the contractor who was awarded the contract in 2018 is yet to turn up at the site to begin preliminary works.
“Up to now, the contractor has not turned up not even to show that they are mobilising to get the work done. Things like that are incomplete in this region. This was a Ministry of Infrastructure project that was awarded since last year.”
In addition, other projects, Ashley said, which should have already commenced for 2019, are yet to begin. The sum of $3.4 billion was approved for the Region One Regional Administration during budgetary allocations in December 2018.
Ashley posited that three months have passed since the budgetary year began and the region is only now in the process of advertising for the capital projects.
“It is in the third month and the region is yet to… it was expected that these projects would have been awarded at least by the 2nd week to the 3rd week of January. They should have started advertising so that by now the contractors would have been able to at least be awarded the contracts for what they are for so that work could have started,” he told this online publication.
He also stated that at the end of this year, if the monies from 2018’s budgetary allocation have not been utilised then they would be returned to the national treasury and many of these projects would have to be “rolled over” to 2020.
“Some of these projects are for the construction of health facilities, enclosure of buildings, gridding and shaping of roads, rehabilitation to health and education facilities, purchasing of vehicles and ATVs (All Terrain Vehicles) etc.”
On December 12, last year, under the education capital programme for 2019, the sum of $151.200 million was approved for rehabilitative work to the Port Kaituma Primary and Secondary Schools and extension of White-Water Nursery School. The sum also catered for the construction of sanitary blocks at Waramuri, Port Kaituma and St John’s Primary Schools and the construction and enclosure of living quarters at Unity Square and Manawarin.
Some $21.9 million was to be spent on school furniture and equipment Including equipment for smart classrooms, desks, benches, cupboards, tables, chairs, racks, fire extinguishers, musical and sports equipment at several schools in the region.
$15.7 million was also allocated for transportation. The money caters for boats and outboard engines at Moruca, Barama, Pawaikuru, and St Nicholas, Waramuri and Santa Cruz Primary and Santa Rosa Secondary Schools among others.
In the area of health, $101.1 million was allocated for the completion of an X-ray room at Pakera District Hospital and staff quarters at Mabaruma; construction of a maternity waiting home at Santa Rosa, health training complex at Mabaruma; health post at Parakese and incinerator at Kwabanna; enclosure of living quarters and upgrading of the central duct system at Mabaruma Regional Hospital and provisions for hot water baths. (Kristen Macklingam)