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The Ministry of Public Works has underscored the need for county authorities to ensure maintenance for completed feeder roads in Bong, Lofa and Nimba Counties.
Speaking in Bong County recently, Deputy Public Works Minister for Rural Development and Community Services, Mr. Christian Herbert emphasized the importance of sustaining investment in the infrastructural sector.
He told local authorities that it is cheaper to maintain rehabilitated feeder roads putting the cost of rehabilitating one kilometer of feeder road at U$100,000, which he said, could be spent to maintain one feeder road annually.
He urged local leaders to set up a road maintenance crew as a proactive measure pending the consummation of frantic efforts to inject a line item in the national budget to maintain feeder roads annually following the completion of the project.
In a related development, the Monitoring Consultant to the Swedish International Development Agency (SIDA), Mr. Ulf Brudefors, agreed with Mr. Herbert in re-emphasizing the need for contracting entities to take into consideration quality control and standards during the implementation of construction projects.
He mandated the Project Implementation Team (PIT) to carry out a risk analysis on the road link from Sanniquellie to Vanyapa, implemented by the Afrique Construction Company in Nimba County as quickly as possible due to a lack of substantial progress on that road.
Mr. Brudefors supported a call for a proposed meeting between contracting entities and the project implementation team to address numerous challenges in an attempt to ensure the unhindered implementation of various projects.
Meanwhile, the Team Leader of the Liberian Swedish Feeder Roads Project (LSFRP), Mr. Belal Hussain, informed the authorities that capacity building and training of project stakeholders is an integral part of the project. He clarified that the measurement of the width and length of each feeder road was based on a feasibility study during an assessment prior to the commencement of the project. Mr. Hussain added that the measurement used was also intended to create access to several other communities. He threatened to discontinue the services of non-performing contracting entities.
Responding, Superintendents of the three counties visited, acknowledged benefits or impacts accrued as a result of interventions made by the Liberian Swedish Feeder Roads Project (LSFRP) under the auspices of the Ministry of Public Works.
They separately outlined access to several communities, reduction in traveling time and transportation fares, increased in agricultural production as well as construction activities are visible, measurable, and realistic impacts or benefits accrued as a result of interventions on feeder roads in their respective counties.