Minister of State, Joseph Harmon, has announced Cabinet’s approval of the awarding of 24 contracts cumulatively costing G$749,583,000, and directed at rehabilitation and construction of roads in Regions Three, Four and Ten.
This initiative, according to Harmon, is part of Government’s commitment to construct and rehabilitate urban and miscellaneous roads in all communities across Guyana.
Declaring that this would boost economic activity in those regions, Harmon is again encouraging contractors to employ residents from the communities where these contracts and projects are being executed. He says this would ensure a better quality of work is executed.
“While the contracts themselves expressly do not provide for the employment of local labour, as a matter for policy, what we have done is require (that), in all these communities, the contractors take the availability of local labour into consideration in their employment practices,” Harmon said.
This, of course, is intended to ensure that the communities also benefit from the money being spent in the awarding of these contracts.
Harmon said that during last year and earlier this year, he and Public Infrastructure Minister David Patterson had gone to the various contract-recipient community and held various meetings with the contractors, requesting they involve members of the communities.
“(Giving members of those communities work) has two benefits: apart from providing employment and economic activity in the community, it also helps the contractor with security of equipment,” he explained.
He said that, in many cases, community projects have been improved with the help of local knowledge and workers.
Government has also stressed that as residents become involved with community projects, they have a better sense of ownership of the project.
Harmon has also urged residents to pay close attention to the works being done by the contractors, and to report any problems to the inspectors, the Neighbourhood Democratic Councils, and the Regional Democratic Councils.
The Minister explained that during recent outreaches in Mon Repos, East Coast Demerara, the residents complained about the condition of the roads in their communities, and works will soon commence in those areas, among others in Region Four.
Areas in Region Four to benefit from works include Melanie Damishana; Oil Mill Road, Cove and John; Hope Main Access Road; Lot Number Four, Gas Station Street, Eccles, EBD; Lots Six and Seven, Kaneville, EBD; and Sideline Dam Good Success, EBD among others. Block 8, Mon Repos Housing Scheme will also benefit from works, after being neglected for years.
In Region Three, works will be carried out at Lot Four: Greenwich Park Main Road; Lot Five: Old Road DeKinderen; Lot Seven: Fisher Dam, Zeelugt;and the Boerasirie Housing Scheme Road.
In Region Ten, there will be the rehabilitation of the Teachers’ Hostel Road in Mackenzie and the One Mile to Canvas City road in Wismar.
The Ministry of Public Infrastructure has said focus will be placed on more concerted efforts to ensure that roads, bridges, energy, power generation and other infrastructural works are undertaken and expanded, consequently leading to a more integrated infrastructure across Guyana.