The statement below was issued by Silas Wilson, the executive assistant to the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Infrastructure, Port Services and Transport.
During several local news telecast on Monday 23rd June 2014, leader of the United Workers Party made an untrue statement which suggested that the Government of St. Lucia through the Ministry of Infrastructure was wasting approximately six (6) million dollars to repave Clarke Street in Vieux Fort.
Allen Chastanet has developed the dubious distinction of deliberately misleading the nation, it is not at all surprising that Allen Chastanet would distort the contents of a contractual arrangement for which a formal signing ceremony view was held in full public view, and which was subsequently made public on all local news telecasts to score cheap political points.
Once again, the Minister of Infrastructure, Port Services and Transport wishes to reiterate the costs and scope of the Clarke Street to Laborie Highway Road Rehabilitation project.
1. On May 29th 2014, the Ministry signed a finance and build agreement with L Caribbean Construction Company Ltd. for a total of $6,207,173.05. The financing of this project attracts a 6% annual interest rate, and the period of repayment is six (6) years. The Contract was signed by the Ministry’s Deputy Permanent Secretary Mr. Ivor Daniel.
2. This project consists of two (2) components. The first component involves overlaying of Clarke Street, and this component will cost $803,038.57, and not the $6,000,000.00 as stated by Allen Chastanet.
3. The second component of this project which starts at the St. Judes Highway and ends at the Clarke Street Intersection entails complete rehabilitation, which includes milling, repaving, associated drainage and replacing four (4) major culvert crossings. Motorists who traverse this road have had to endure poor road conditions for quite some time. The second component will cost $5,404,134.48.
4. A total of 2.95 Km of road will be rehabilitated under this project. When this road project is compared with the Anse Ger to Desruisseaux road project which the previous government undertook, it brings into sharp focus the approach used in determining the costs of road projects undertaken by the previous government.
5. When interest payments are added, the Clarke Street to Laborie Highway road project will cost this country $2,451,127.86 per kilometre, while the Anse Ger Road Rehabilitation project has cost $3,678,399.34 per kilometre (more than $1.2 million over the Clarke street project). The Anse Ger Road Rehabilitation Project was completed two (2) years ago. At the time the contract was negotiated and the Anse Ger road was built, Allen Chastanet was a member of the Cabinet of Ministers.
6. This road is important to the economic development of the south west of St. Lucia. Allen Chastanets’ statements suggests that those persons are not worthy of good infrastructure, a clear manifestation of disdain and scorn for the people of the south.
The MIPST trusts that the public understands the issue and would not be sold on lies and misinformation.