China to Construct Capitol Building Annexes

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The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Rules, Order and Administration has informed Senate plenary that construction work on the two annexes to the Capitol Building for the House of Representatives and Senate will commence on July 1.

According to Lofa County Senator George Tengbeh, the Government of the People’s Republic of China will finance and construct the two annexes.

Senator Tengbeh made the disclosure on Thursday when he briefed plenary. He said negotiations for the project started in November 2012, “and now we have received communication from the Ministry of Public Works that arrangements have been concluded and that the work will commence on July 1 this year.”

The Lofa Lawmaker made the announcement in the Chamber of the Senate after electricity was restored to the building following a power outage in the entire Capitol Building for over five hours.

With the welcomed news, Tengbeh said the normal work of both Houses will continue, but clarified that the work on the building rests with the lawmakers.

“The Chinese Government is only responsible for the two annexes; this means that as of July 1, they are going to bring down the power house, and in its place construct a mini powerhouse and install two 500 KVA for the purpose of their work.”

Senator Tengbeh did not say when the project will be completed, but noted that even though normal work at the Capitol Building will continue, some restrictions in movements will be put in place because of the work.

Tengbeh informed his colleagues that actual work on the two annexes will start by October 31. “So we just thought to brief plenary on this latest development,” he said, adding, “the complete renovation of this building rests with the Legislature, meaning the government of Liberia.”

The Unity Party Legislator did not, however, say whether the leaderships of both Houses were contemplating further negotiation for the two 500KVA generators to be turned over to the Capitol Building for their use.

It can be recalled that the Senate had failed twice to convene session, either for lack of electricity or lack of quorum, or both.

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