Bids were opened yesterday for continued work for the Amaila Falls Access Road, weeks after the project collapsed.
Bids for the building of a pontoon crossing at the Butukari Landing, Essequibo River were opened at the National Procurement and Tender Administration Board, Ministry of Finance compound, Main Street and had an estimated cost of $107.1 M.
Works Minister Robeson Benn last week said that government will continue work on the Amaila Falls Hydropower Project road despite the collapse of the larger hydro project, since discontinuing it mid-step would mean all the investment would go to waste. “The fact of the matter is that the road is under construction.
We cannot abandon construction of the road in the way it is or else we will lose all investment. It is not completed and if you do it halfway, it will be destroyed in the critical sector,” Benn told Stabroek News.
“We have to secure the investment that we put out there so far. That is the logical thing that I see, from my position,” he said.
He said that government is prepared to bear the maintenance cost of the road once completed; so that it would be available should the project receive the breath of life.
He added that should new investors come on board and the project is put back together financially, there would be something of a road already in place.
“If we don’t complete it now we will be caught mid-step. If you stop mid-step, what you build would be destroyed,” he said. “In reality if you don’t continue it to some reasonable completion you will lose investment. If you don’t finish now, you will have to find money to restart it completely again whenever the project is put together again,” he said.
Asked when the road would be completed and what the final cost would be, Benn declined to give any information, saying that the ministry now has to look back at the numbers.
Further, he noted that the final cost would not be unrealistic in terms of the terrain that has to be turned into road.
He said the contractors are still on the ground working on the various sections of the road.
Engineer at the Ministry, Walter Willis explained to Stabroek News that the pontoon would connect Section 2 of the Road with Section 3. Willis said that it will be called the Butukari Landing and will have a capacity of 120 tonnes gross weight meant to accommodate the turbines and generators for Amaila.
The table below is reflective of the bids made by the two companies that submitted tenders yesterday.