Dion: Bad road costing a lot of money

National, Normal

The National, Friday 11th November 2011

By Abigail APINA
PRIORITY roads in East New Britain that are in poor condition are costing road users too much, East New Britain Governor Leo Dion says.
He said transport infrastructure development and maintenance was critical to economic growth in the province.
He said the province was unable to carry out the bare minimum of maintenance to many existing roads that were falling well beyond repair.
“This would mean that any funding for maintenance will have to be significant to avoid solutions that will achieve very poor quality of work and be costly in the long term,” Dion said.
He said three years ago, the provincial government documented and submitted to the national government a submission for K300 million for maintenance of roads in the province but had not received a favourable response.
Dion said the figure in the submission had been significantly reduced to a minimum of K45 million to fix only some of the priority roads that were in a poor state.
“We will continue to follow-up and pursue this with the national government until we secure the funds to do this badly needed maintenance on our roads,” he said.
Dion said the 14km missing link from Malasaet to Open Bay of the new Britain highway, the 2.7km Vulcan section and the Toma Junction to Ratunur Road that were tendered by the Central Supplies and  Tenders Board were either already awarded or waiting confirmation of funding.