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…Dharamlall charges Queensway after nearly $1B contract award
The Ministry of Local Government and Regional Development last week signed four major contracts for works to be completed in Region Six, East Berbice Corentyne.
The signing of the contracts was done by the Regional Executive Officer, Narindra Persaud in the presence of Minister of Local Government, Nigel Dharamlall, Regional Chairman and the four contractors, N & S General Engineering and Contracting Services, Premium Asphalt, Shaffeeullah Sawmill and Queensway Security Services Inc.
Over 1 Billion dollars was signed over to do rehabilitation work at the entrance of the #63 Beach; rehabilitation of the #61 beach entrance; extension of the Berbice High School and Security Provisions for the Regional Democratic Council.
A total of $31.4 million dollars was allocated to do the rehabilitation of the #63 Beach entrance by Shaffeeullah Sawmill; $28.7 million to Premium Asphalt for rehabilitation of the #61 Beach entrance; $14.8 million to N & S General Engineering and Contracting Services for the extension work at the Berbice High School and $988,786,754 to the Queensway Security Services for provision of security service to the Regional Democratic Council.
Dharamlall noted that the government continues to spend time in the fields to assess the implementation of each project and ensures they are executed to the specifications of the contract. He said it is important that every contract is completed in a timely manner and suits the expectations of the people of Region Six.
“The budget for Region Six is in excess of $6 billion dollars and we are signing a portion of this budget for these contacts here in Region Six. We have more to do but I thought that, with this being such a significant quantum of the budget, we spend some time speaking about it publicly. Region Six is one of the contiguous regions where a lot of investments will be placed in this region outside of the RDC and through different agencies of the government including at the level of the central government”
Minister noted that with the current circumstances in Region Six it is the government’s duty to perform exceptionally well as there have been too many reports of poor quality works being one and poor quality services being provided.
As such, $988, 786,754 was signed in contract to the Queensway Security Services to ensure advanced and high-quality services are provided to employees of the security firms.
This came following several complaints made to President Irfaan Ali about the injustice of the security service providers towards those persons who were hired. Minister Dharamlall urged the contractor of Queensway Security Services to ensure that the persons employed are being treated fairly and that they are being paid on time.
“We see our budget as a source of income, employment and livelihood for our people and so we expect you to ensure that whoever you have employed, firstly perform their duties and secondly, you also have an obligation to them to ensure that they are being paid and that all of the discounts that have to be made are being made to their benefit”
Minister noted that they have had several complaints about employees NIS not being remitted not only in Region Six but all other regions. As such he urged all the contractors to ensure all their staff are being paid and that deductions, as it relates to NIS and others are in order.
“We don’t want to get to a point when someone is 60 years old and they have no pension to get from NIS or even to a point where someone is earning either directly or indirectly from the government resources or taxpayers that when they turn up sick they don’t have the support they desire simply because their NIS is not in order”
Dharamlall stated that it is quite evident that there are a number of dilapidated infrastructures across the country. As such he noted that transformation will take place since several projects are underway. He further stated that they will restart the public placement of unpriced bill of quantities in or around the project sites and also have site visits conducted by the public works department and that all visits be countersigned by the contractor or their authorised representative on the site.
In an attempt to being of great benefit to villages and project areas, the Minister told the contractors, if the need arises for more workers, they should employ skilled or even unskilled people from the area to boost the village economy and create employment for those who are in need. All the contractors have pledged to begin their work in the coming weeks.