MEMBERS OF Parliament's Public Administration and Appropriations Committee were told yesterday that some landowners in Christiana, Manchester, are yet to receive payment for land the Government acquired to build the $800-million bypass road in the town.
Barbara Hew, senior director of projects in the Ministry of Finance, disclosed that sums owed to the landowners were being "considered for inclusion for payment" in the 2013-2014 Budget.
Committee member Richard Parchment demanded answers as to why the landowners, in some instances small farmers, were still owed for their property.
Parchment noted that the contractor was paid for his work while there was no definitive date for payment to the small landowner.
Clement Watson, executive director of the Road Maintenance Fund (RMF), said some payments were made using Jamaica Development Infrastructure Programme (JDIP) funds.
The RMF head said, however, that payments from the JDIP funds were halted after the auditor general declared that it could not be done in that manner.
It was advised that the payment for lands should be made through the Ministry of Finance.
The RMF borrowed the US$340 million from the China EXIM Bank to carry out the massive road programme. It is currently servicing the loan by using proceeds from the fuel tax.