Aubrey Barker Road to be further expanded – Min Eghill

— Utility providers urged to comply with MOU agreement

Despite the delayed progression of infrastructural works on the Aubrey Barker four-lane expansion project, Minister of Public Works, Bishop Juan Edghill, announced that the government will be extending the road by another 1.3 kilometers.

Minister Edghillmade this disclosure on Tuesday during an inspection of the project.

Minister of Public Works, Bishop Juan Edghill inspecting ongoing works on Aubrey Barker Road alongside engineers

“We have tenders out right now for the continuation of another 1.3 kilometres of road to widen Aubrey Barker to four lanes, the current project is taking too long,” he stated.

During the inspection, the minister discovered that the progression of works is being hindered due to the placement of a Digicel pole, which is directly aligned with the ongoing construction.

 It was further uncovered that the utility company was informed of this by the overseeing engineer but made no attempts to have the pole removed.

As a result, the minister immediately notified the company to have the pole removed before the end of the day, or appropriate action would be taken.

Ongoing works on Aubrey Barker Road

“There again, I had to make a decision on the spot. I called Digicel, if they don’t move their wires by this afternoon, we will publish a public notice informing the communities that we will have to remove the poles and the wires will be affected and the responsibility will be with Digicel,” the Public Works Minister emphasised.

Minister Edghill further explained that in January, the ministry signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with all the utility providers, outlining how the ministry will operate to ensure that no entity impedes the progress of others’ work.

The utility providers include Guyana Water Inc (GWI), Guyana Telephone & Telegraph Co Ltd (GTT), Digicel, Guyana Power and Light (GPL and the National Data Management Authority (NDMA).

Despite this, the minister noticed that utility providers are not being compliant with the MOU agreement.

“So, its again selfishness, utilities not putting their best foot forward based upon good faith agreement and of course the bottom line will be the Ministry of Public Works, the Government of Guyana we dig up the road a long time, our men not getting to work but there are direct utilities in the line of the alignment.”

Meanwhile, the minister highlighted that the Lamaha extension project is also facing similar challenges. He affirmed that the government will not allow contractors to delay projects without consequences.

“Government’s delivery of goods and services to people is priority, it is paramount that is why we are in government. We can’t keep hearing excuses,” he said firmly.