Govt’s failure to pay contractor stalls North Malaita roadwork

A deteriorating stretch of road in North Malaita. Photo: SIBC

The Ministry of Infrastructure Development has confirmed that a lack of payment from the Government caused Hatanga Construction Limited to terminate its road rehabilitation work in North Malaita.

After months without payment, Hatanga Construction Limited decided to stop its work on road upgrades in the region last November.

Supervising Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Infrastructure Development Jimmy Nuake said the company withdrew from the project according to the terms of its contract.

“They sent notice to the ministry that they wanted to terminate the contract then the ministry accepted it, and the contract is now finished,” he said.

Mr Nuake said the ministry will engage another company to complete the work, which involves major bridges and culverts in North Malaita.

Residents are currently using six temporary bridges that Hatanga built while it was working in the area.

Hamuel Abeta of Mamafua, North Malaita said the temporary bridges are unsafe for continued use.

“I want to ask the Government to quickly consider the bridges here in the north because all of our trucks here travel at night,” Mr Abeta said. “It’s the rainy season here, and if the rivers flood, it can damage the bridges.”

By Fred Osifelo 

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