His Excellency the President Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma has launched the Bandajuma-Liberia Boarder Road, the Moyamba Junction-Moyamba road, and four bridges including the Rogbere and Mabang bridges estimated at 140 million euros.
During the launch that commenced in Bandajuma, Pujehun District on Tuesday 24th May 2016, President Koroma said the Bandajuma-Liberia road project will not only open up Sierra Leone to the sub region, but will also enhance trade and reduce poverty through job creation as hundreds of Sierra Leoneans will be recruited for the road project.
President Koroma said when he assumed the reigns of office, his government had a clear path of what they want to achieve, and that is the reason why they prioritised infrastructural development, health, agriculture, education and energy in both the Agenda for Change and the Agenda for prosperity.
Roads according to President Koroma is the catalyst for socio-economic growth in any country, noting that his government has constructed more roads in the history of this country than any other government. I have linked regional and districts headquarter towns with good road network, I have also linked towns and villages with road network and I will continue to link more towns and villages with good roads until the end of my term, he stated.
President Koroma recalled the strained relationship between the Government of Sierra Leone and the European Union, emanating from non-performance of contract that prompted the EU to withhold their support. He noted that he fought hard to restore the confidence of the EU on his government culminating in funding of the largest project in the history of the country.
On the Moyamba Junction-Moyamba road project, President Koroma said Moyamba district is a strategic district linking three regions, the east, north and the western regions which make that route a priority. He called on the people of Moyamba District to work in close collaboration with the contractor, MSF for the timely conclusion of the project.
President Koroma also took similar messages of effective monitoring and collaboration with the contractors to Rogbere and Mabang for the timely conclusion of the projects.
President Ernest Koroma commended the European Union for the confidence reposed in his government pointing out that he will maintain that trust and confidence. He called on stakeholders in the district to serve as watch dog and effectively monitor the project to its logical conclusion.
The Head of Delegation of the European Union (EU) in Sierra Leone, Ambassador Peters Verstteg said the Bandajuma-Liberia Boarder road Project is estimated at 105 million euros and is a grant to the Government of Sierra Leone.
He said the road project would create over seven hundred (700) job facilities for Sierra Leoneans, with preference to women. He advised drivers plying the roads to avoid over loading and reckless driving so as to preserve the life span of this road.
Works, Housing and Infrastructure Minister who served as Chairman for the ceremony, Alhaji Kemoh Sesay said that the road will be a Trans Africa Sub-Regional Highway that will connect Africa, stressing that with the EU support to the Ernest Bai Koroma Administration, the lives of Sierra Leoneans would be transformed.
The Minister assured the EU that the Project would be constantly monitored through his Ministry, the Sierra Leone Roads Authority, the National Authorising Office (NAO) and other Key Stakeholders.
He assured Sierra Leoneans that the work will be done for a period of 36 months and promised that the Company CSE can deliver within the stipulated time and work with quality and high standard.
The Director, National Authorising Office, Alhaji Sorie Ba Kanu said Bandajuma-Liberia Boarder Road including the construction of three bridges costs about 105 million euros will last for 36 months. This project, he said will be undertaken by CSE. The Moyamba Junction-Moyamba road together with the Mabang, Rogbere, Gbangbama and Moyamba bridges will last for 24 months and will be done by a Portuguese Construction Company, MSF.
The host Paramount Chief of Fakunya Chiefdom, Moyamba District, P.C Joseph Kavurah Kongomoh II, thanked President Koroma for the great stride shown not only to the District but to the whole Nation. He admonished the President to consider other vital roads in the district like the Moyamba-Shenge road and the Njala - Mano Junction if he is determined to alleviate poverty and enhance socio-economic progress in the district.
The Paramount Chief called upon Government to also help address the Njala - Mano Road and bring an end to the ban of secret societies.