Last Updated on Friday, 24 June 2022, 14:51 by Denis Chabrol
Public Works Minister Juan Edghill on Friday warned that the time is up for the voluntary removal of encumbrances and derelict vehicles nearby roads and gave notice that from Monday an operation would begin to remove them.
Addressing the turning-of-the sod ceremony for the construction of a 7.8 kilometre road from Ogle, East Coast Demerara to Haags-Bosch, East Bank Demerara, he suggested that use of government reserves nearby public roads would no longer be allowed. “If somebody comes out with a dog food stand or a cart selling food or somebody decides to go on the reserve and wash a car and call it a car wash, should we allow that, as a country, to stop Guyana’s development?…We can’t allow that,” he said.
Mr Edghill said for several weeks now the Public Works Ministry has published notices in the media asking persons to remove encumbrances from all government reserves along roadway, but now action would be taken against those who have refused to do so. “That period of asking for moving is over. As of Monday, the Ministry of Public Works will begin to move derelicts, sand, stone, debris; everything that is in the path and is encumbering the road shoulders throughout the length and breadth of Guyana,” he said. At the same time, he assured that construction material that is being used for current works would not be taken away.
The Public Works Minister said pickets, bricks and boulders that reserve parking areas would be carted off by a Public Works Ministry crew. he said those object pose risks to life and limb. “We have to bring and end to the lawlessness while we develop Guyana,” he added.
He said if the owners of removed items need to repossess them, they would have to pay the government the cost of the removal.
Recalling that police were summoned to remove a man who was obstructing the installation of a plaque at ‘mile zero’, Mr. Edghill said “lawlessness and recklessness” that might be fuelled by political agenda would not be tolerated.
The road , which will be constructed at a cost of more than US$300 million including a US$50 million line of credit from India’s Export-Import (EXIM) Bank, is expected to ease traffic congestion in and out of Georgetown. “They don’t have to go through the city to create more traffic jams in the city, more time lost on the road,” said Public Works Minister II Deodat Indar.
India’s High Commissioner to Guyana, Dr K J Srinivasa remarked that the line of credit for the project had been approved eight years ago. “Better late than never,” he said.