Wednesday, November 25, 2020

OIC Gambia: Construction of 20 New Roads Starts in March 2021

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By Ndey Sowe

Ebrima Colley, the Project Manager for the Organisation of Islamic Corporation (OIC) Gambia, has disclosed that the proposed fifty kilometers (50KM) of 20 new urban roads construction will commence in March 2021.

Mr. Colley, who made the remarks last Friday while on tour with national assembly members on the aforesaid roads project, said the designs of the roads will be completed by the end of 2020 and then the tender will start.

By the first quarter of 2021, work will ensue, he added.

“We want to make sure that all the procurements are also done {in} due process. We are doing our best to make sure that everything is transparent,” he said.

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Colley said despite the Covid-19, they were able to go through all the procurement processes and by March, they will have the contractor on board.

“I will not call them feeder roads but I am telling you these are the same as the roads that we see on our high ways because they are going to have drainages, sidewalks, street lights and everything that a road should have based on the space available,” Colley said.

He said they expect the best because they are not building sub-standard roads, but they want to build standard roads that would last for many years.

“We will continue to push the contractors when they are on board and the consultant to ensure that supervision and other things are in place and we will continue to push the executing agencies to make sure that our targets are met,” he said.

One of the proposed new roads to be constructed

The Head of Brand and Communication OIC Gambia, Nfally Fadera, said the funding for the 20 new modern roads (50KM) has already been acquired.

“It is a loan through the Saudi fund”, he said.

Mr. Fadera said the Bertil Harding Highway will be expanded into a dual carriage alongside a pedestrian walkway on each side, adding that all the roads will be fitted with streetlights, drainage system, footpaths, where applicable.

Sidia Jatta, the National Assemble Member for Wulli West, applauded OIC Gambia for taking the time to take them through all the roads that they are assigned to construct.

“We have seen that you have lot to do but we are also happy that you are well prepared for the task to which you are being assigned,” he said.

Jatta hoped that some of the issues they have raised would be factored into the project.

The issues raised included providing pipes for water, electricity among others.

He informed the OIC Gambia officials that they are their partners and anything that they can do to make it easier for them; they should not hesitate to contact them.

To Jatta, the construction of the roads is fundamentally important for the country and its people.

Yankuba Dibba, OIC Gambia Chief Executive Officer (CEO), said they could not have accessed the funds without the intervention of the national assembly.

Dibba added that the tour is like an audit and accountability trip, where the law makers will get to see whether the decision they have taken has been applied on the ground.

He assured the law makers that OIC Gambia is on track despite the delay caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“We will try as much as possible to deliver on time,” he promised.

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