Minister of Transport and Works, Hon. Mike Henry, has said that one objective of the current Jamaica Development Infrastructure Programme (JDIP), is to improve the technical capacity of the National Works Agency (NWA) to test the quality of road works.
Minister of Transport and Works, Hon. Mike Henry, displaying a leaflet with roads to be rehabilitated and maintained in Clarendon, during the first phase of the Jamaica Development Infrastructure Programme (JDIP). He was speaking at the North Clarendon launch of the JDIP on Friday (November 12), at the Summerfield Community Centre.
In light of this, he has cautioned contractors involved in the programme to approach the design and development of the roads in a different manner.
“You must approach the design and the development of road in a different manner. We didn’t have technical capacity in the National Works Agency (NWA), (but) part of this loan is to outfit and increase the technical capacity of the National Works Agency to test and make sure you get the quality road,” the Minister told the launch of the North Clarendon leg of the programme, at Summerfield on Friday (November 12).
Mr. Henry said the JDIP must be driven, primarily, by quality work, as well as provide an opportunity for young people to learn the necessary skills over its five-year duration.
The five-year maintenance project, under the JDIP, will see Jamaicans attaining scholarships to study engineering in China.
“We are sending 10 people away to study engineering at the cost of China Harbour, under this programme,” Mr. Henry explained.
He also pledged to listen to the public’s response to the programme and the quality of works.
“My office will be open to hear from the public, what adjustments we need to make in terms of production,” he told the audience.
Over 40 major roads are to be rehabilitated and maintained in Clarendon during the first phase of the JDIP, November 2010-March 2011, while some 12 new traffic signals are to be installed.
The road programme is being carried out by China Harbour Engineering Company, with subbing to local contractors. Funding has been augmented by the Road Maintenance Fund (RMF), through the collection of the Fuel Cess. Under the programme, works are been effected on roads, bridges, drains and traffic systems.
JDIP is a Government of Jamaica partnership with the People’s Republic of China, to significantly improve the island’s road network over a five year period, through a $36 billion loan from the Export Import (EXIM) Bank of China.