US$94.5M RIA Road Expansion Project under House’s X-ray

President Weah steps down from the yellow machine

Since winning the US$94.5 million contract for the expansion of the Roberts International Airport Highway, there have been multiple concerns about East International’s ability to implement the multimillion-dollar project.

In February 2020, President George M. Weah broke ground for the 45km, 4-lane ELWA–RIA Road Project, but due the slow pace of the road pavement that is resulting to enduring traffic congestions, members of the House of Representatives have expressed disappointment, buttressing a communication from Margibi County District #1 Representative Tibelrosa Tarponweh, over the 'snail movement' of the project of which many are wondering if it is because of lack of equipment.

Following the reading of Rep. Tarponweh's letter in Tuesday's session, the plenary voted to invite Acting Minister of Public Works, Madam Ruth Coker-Collins, to appear before the august body to provide an update on the status of the ELWA-RIA road corridor contracted to East Construction Company by the Government of Liberia.

Rep. Matthew Joe's Public Works Committee is expected to invite the Minister and her lieutenants, and Mr. Sakona Kelvin Buima, the Company’s General Manager, this Friday to kick off the Investigation.

According to Rep. Joe, the project is titled: “Upgrading to Dual Carriageway -- ELWA-Roberts International Airport Highway,” and it cuts across Paynesville City in Montserrado County to Unification Town in Margibi County.

According to reports gathered, the proposed four-lane road, which is expected to be completed and dedicated in 2023, would also reduce accidents that have claimed the lives of many drivers, passengers and pedestrians.

It will also improve the movement of people, goods, and services to and from six of the fifteen counties, namely: Margibi, Grand Bassa, Rivercess, Sinoe, Grand Kru, and Maryland.

It may be recalled that the Assistant Public Works Minister for Operations, Kau Stella Kialain, who provided the overview of the project, said the ground breaking of the RIA will mark a transformation of Liberia's road infrastructure and that the project has been strategically planned to meet the timeline, but the framework calls for the project to be executed into three lots which include: 1) from Roberts International Airport to Junk River Bridge; 2) from Junk River Bridge to ELWA junction and; 3) the construction of the Junk River Bridge and the upgrading of the existing bridge.