MARACHA. The local community members surrounding Ojio concrete box culvert bridge in Kijomoro sub-county, Maracha district have resolved to start monitoring its construction works in a bid to avoid a repeat of shoddy work.

At least shs130m has been allocated for reconstructing the bridge after it collapsed due to shoddy work.

Speaking on behalf of the locals, Mr Emmanuel Candia, the Abinyu village local council one secretary in Lamila parish where the bridge is located stated that its collapse greatly affected service delivery in the area.

He noted that people have been finding it extremely hard to connect to schools, health centers, government offices and also their fields, especially during the rainy season.

Candia made the remarks during the project handover to Arindua investments and company limited, a construction company contracted to build the four metre bridge.

“You have physically seen the dangers of shoddy work on this bridge and it is the reason we were forced to improvise logs across the river so that people can temporarily access services. We are now going to monitor its works very closely to avoid a repeat of what happened last time,” Mr Candia said.

During the function, Mr. George Olega, the Maracha district senior engineer cautioned against failure to complete work within the four months project period.

“Unless you state a clear reason for failing to complete this work in time, we will start charging you because of liquidated damages. Fortunately, site surveying was done, begin work immediately with site clearing, digging the foundation until slab level,” Mr. Olega directed.

Mr. Ratib Atiku, the manager Arindua investments and company limited called for teamwork among the stakeholders and pledged to observe the guidelines in the bid document.

“Our priority is to ensure that quality work is done, we shall follow what is required by the engineer so that they recommend us to do more work in other places,” Mr. Atiku stated.

Maracha district assistant Chief Administrative Officer, Mr Modest Wadia apologized to the communities for the earlier shoddy work done 18 years ago.

“I am sorry, in 2002 when I was sub-county chief of Oluvu, this bridge was one of our projects but today the project is not working and has never served the way we intended. When it collapsed, the communities alleged that we used residue of distilled alcohol as cement,” Wadia said.

“Otherwise, no money got lost except what was allocated was inadequate to build a better bridge on such a powerful river and our engineers were not qualified,” Mr. Wadia testified.

Shoddy work, poor soil texture, and human activities in the district’s bridge sites including Ndidri in Tara sub-county among others have made the district allocate more money to reconstruct collapsed bridges.

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