During 2012-2014, the Region 6 RDC successfully executed infrastructure projects in New Amsterdam

Dear Editor,

I read in your letter column (SN 04/06/2017), a letter titled `New Amsterdam in ruinous state, ministers should visit’ with interest and wish to share a few points for edification purposes.

During the fiscal years 2012-2014 the Regional Democratic Council (RDC)  of Region 6  would have successfully executed/completed infrastructure projects within the township of New Amsterdam as follows:

1) Sectional repairs to Trinity Street towards Main Street.

2) Repairs and capping of LFS Burnham (Coburg) Street between Main Street and Republic Road.

3) Built a double lane concrete culvert bridge at RDC 6 Vryman’s Erven access.

4) Built a single lane concrete culvert bridge at NIS branch office access.

5) Sectional repairs and pothole patches to Main Street from the Arch to Islington (Tacama junction).

6) Sectional repairs and pothole patches to Republic Road from Winkle to Islington (Tacama junction).

7) Phase 1 of spreading blended crusher run to part of the impassable section of Strand Road.

(In addition, RDC 6 proposed to the then Public Works Ministry, now Public Infrastructure Ministry, for both Republic Road and Strand Road to be refurbished using asphaltic concrete)

8) Double Bituminous Surface Treatment (DBST) capping of several streets in Stanleytown.

9) Concerning the garbage collection – the New Amsterdam Municipality never supported the private garbage collection/ disposal Initiative even though it was a Central Government policy for the administrative region, so the non-support and failure of the municipality to allow the private garbage collection/disposal service provider to handle the process may have led to the present situation identified by the author.

Bear in mind that the township of New Amsterdam does not fall under the RDC 6’s mandate, however, the Regional Administration still saw it fit to assist in such areas of infrastructural development for the benefit of the residents of the town. Further, the RDC Region 6 during those years 2012-14 (and prior) fostered a very close working relationship with all three townships of the County and always provided technical support to them in the areas of infrastructural development.

Moreso, the RDC 6 Regional Administration went ahead and conducted its own condition survey and needs analysis for the East Bank Berbice Public Road in 2013 and estimated that the road would have cost around $600M just to resurface with asphaltic concrete from Islington to Light Town and spread blended crusher run from Light Town to Mara and further proposed to undertake the project in three annual phases. However, the Regional Administration was advised by the Minis-try of Finance that such a project fell under the purview of the then Ministry of Public Works, now the Ministry of Public Infrastructure, and would have been too large for the Region to undertake singlehandedly, plus a required feasibility study was to start in order for the Government of Guyana to access savings from a foreign-funded project to undertake a new road project for the East Bank Berbice Public Road.

It is noteworthy to mention that in my 2015 Budgetary Allocations for Capital Projects for the Region, the Ministry of Communities cautioned me on the number of projects which were listed to be executed within the township of New Amsterdam.

Inasmuch as the author might not have had prior knowledge of such information and viewed the RDC No.6 as not having the “human resources capacity as well as the visionary care” which contributed to 25 years of the worst forms of infrastructure neglect for New Amsterdam, I would conclude by saying, on account of the foregoing, that I do not subscribe to such a pronouncement since the fiscal period 2012-2014 can stand alone and be judged on its own merit.

Yours faithfully,
Paul Ramrattan
Former Regional Executive Officer


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