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Works Minister defends delays in billion-dollar Clarendon road project

Published:Monday | January 25, 2016 | 1:05 AM
Transport and Works Minister, Dr Omar Davies says the budget for the project will remain $1.3 billion which was signed off on in 2014.

The government is rejecting claims by the Opposition that a flawed design is the reason for the delay in a billion-dollar Clarendon road project that set to miss a March deadline for completion. 

Earlier this month, The Gleaner/Power 106 News Centre reported that works being done on the Soursop Turn to Chapelton road corridor will not meet the targeted March date and is now expected to be completed in June. 

Opposition Spokesperson on the Works, Mike Henry, has alleged that the design contained errors and measurement inaccuracies that were discovered after the project started. 

However, transport and works minister Dr Omar Davies is insisting, as explained by the National Works Agency, that the decision to extend the deadline was based on reducing cost.

But, Davies admits that the decision to change the plans came after the work had started.  

 

Transport and Works Minister, Dr Omar Davies

Davies says the budget for the project will remain $1.3 billion which was signed off on in 2014.

The Opposition Jamaica Labour Party has called for the Office of the Contractor General to open a probe into the contract award process to determine whether taxpayers are getting value for money.

In 2014, The Government signed a contract for the reconstruction and straightening of 10.5 kilometres of roadway from Soursop Turn to Chapelton.

The NWA said that up to December 11, the project was 37 per cent complete.