The Ministry of Public Works has announced plans for construction works on the Madina – Robertsport road in Grand Cape Mount County.
The construction work, which is expected to get underway at the end of this month, followed the signing and awarding of the contract to SSF Entrepreneur with the Government through the Ministry of Public Works to begin the road during this dry season.
Acting Public Works Minister, Ruth Coker-Collins, who made the disclosure during an assessment of the project site, said the project is valued at over US$7.18 million, and is being pre-financed.
The Acting Public Works Minister further stated that the Ministry will assign its engineers that will monitor the contractor for the successful completion of the project.
Madam Ruth Coker-Collins, however, clarified that the road will remain pliable while the construction works continue.
It may be recalled that top officials of government including Minister of State Nathaniel McGill, Finance Minister Samuel Tweah, Senator Zoe Emmanuel Pennue of Grand Gedeh County and other officials took a visit to the Robertsport Road to ascertain the damage that occurred on the road due to erosion.
The Acting Public Works Minister said all is set to begin on the Robertsport Road at the end of this month. The entire length of the road, the Acting Public Works Minister says, is 41.5 kilometres.
“We have completed the process to get our contractor on the road and in the dry season, the work on the road will get started. The first 15 kilometers will get started. We are completing the contracting and will come to the public to say how much the road will cost,” Minister Collins said.
According to the Minister of Public Works, based on the concern relating to the damage of the road, a team of contractors is carrying on what she termed as temporary work before actual construction work can start.
“So, we actually came because of the concern the people have raised that the road broke. And so, we could not sit back and wait for the dry season to come; it concerns us, that is why we have come to see the problem,” she said.
Madam Collins added: “The spot that got spoiled, I think you can see we have brought everything out of the covert and the contractor will get it fixed. Even though we will fix it temporarily, we are going to make sure that it is ok for cars to pile on it before we can finish the road.”
At the same time, the Minister of State for Presidential Affairs, Mr. McGill, said President Weah has decided that his administration will connect every county capital. He added that the President has instructed that the road be paved with asphalt.
“The President has committed himself to make sure that the road is fixed and when we say ‘fixed’, we are going to put asphalt pavement. The intent is the entire 41.5 kilometers of the road should be completed before the President’s first tenure ends, that is his goal,” Minister McGill said.
He added, “On behalf of the President, we are here. The President sent us to come to see the job. You know the last time when the President was here, he said he wants to fix this road and so when the road was cut, the President reminded us that not just to fix the bridge or the place that is cut but to make sure that we fix the entire road.
“The President came to Grand Cape Mount and he made a commitment and you know the President is a ‘talk and do’. The President says this is not the time to sit in the offices. Monrovia is not Liberia. Liberia belongs to every sector, there are people who are outside of Monrovia that deserve better,” he said.
Grand Cape Mount County is noted for its tourist attraction as one of the best areas in the world to practice surfing. Adding up, the Minister of Finance said the road, when completed will boost the tourism sector of the country.
“This road could improve our tourism sector for the future. So, we need to make the investment here for businesses to come here so that tourists can ride on good roads to come to Grand Cape Mount County,” Minister Tweah said.
According to him, the current leadership at the Ministry of Information is doing well by rebranding the tourism sector and the government is going to provide more funding to the sector.
“You can see the beauty, the ocean is right behind us, in 10 years to come, and when you come here you will see that this landscape will be different, Grand Cape Mount tourism sector will be different. They say this is one of the best surfing places in the world. So, the Germans, the Americans and people from all around the world will be trooping here,” she said.
He added: “The President came here and he drove on this road during his county tour and he was very strong [in saying] that we have to fix this road. So, I say the Ministry of Finance under the mandate of the President will do all it can to find the money to fix this road.”
Also speaking, the Co-Chair on Public Works and Rural Development at the Liberian Senate, Zoe E. Pennue, was glad to be part of the team to do an inspection on the road.
Senator Pennue added: “We can assure you that the Committee on Public Works will work along with the Executive to make sure that the entire road in Liberia including the Southeastern Road is fixed.”