MONTEGO BAY — Minister of State for Transport and Works, Hon. Othneil Lawrence, said he is pleased at the quality and quantity of work being done under the Jamaica Infrastructure Development Programme (JDIP).
He said that equally satisfying is the positive response he has been receiving from persons, who use the roadways.
Speaking to journalists Friday afternoon following a tour of JDIP projects in St. Elizabeth, he informed that since taking up office two months ago, he has visited projects in some eight parishes and “so far, I am really impressed. Also, just talking with the residents of these communities we realize that definitely, they are really overwhelmed with what is happening for them under the JDIP programme."
The State Minister and a technical team from the National Works Agency (NWA) had examined project sites in Manchester the day before.
Work is underway on 11 projects in Manchester at a cost of some $700 million, while more than $600 million is being spent on the construction and rehabilitation of 12 roads in St. Elizabeth. Three of the projects in St. Elizabeth have been completed and should officially open soon, while the others are between 60 and 90 per cent complete.
Mr. Lawrence said that the Ministry is working with the utility companies to ensure that any improvements they need to carry out is done in tandem with the road works, which will prevent the digging up of roads once they are completed.
As it relates to the maintenance of the roads, Mr. Lawrence informed that the contracts contain a defect liability clause, which makes the contractors responsible for any defects that occur between six months to a year after completion.
He said thought is being given to engaging road contractors for a five-year period for the maintenance of the roads that they build, which, in the long run, will prove to be cost effective.
By Bryan Miller, JIS Reporter