The recent heavy rains which flooded the country’s streets have seemingly showed up some infrastructural insecurities -mainly poorly built roads and drainage systems. This is the complaint being levied by residents some of whom say that roads in their villages have not been fixed for years.
One such woman made an outcry on social media to the Prime Minister and Member of Parliament for St. Paul Asot Michael about a road in the Gunthorpes community.
“There is one road that was completed by Joanne Messiah years ago from the main road by the cricket field in Gunthorpes to the back road in Potters….All the remaining roads in Gunthorpes are not fit for driving or even walking on whether it rains or not.
“In the last 6 years we had seven different surveyors who came and pappy show demself to have road done and not a drum was heard each time,” the outraged resident said. She even claimed to have used monies out of her pocket to purchase aggregates which were used to fix a corner.
But Minister of Works Lennox Weston has declared: “We are going to take Antigua and Barbuda to a brand-new level.” He said his Ministry plans to ”tackle small constituencies first.”
But the plan is for “90 percent of roads that people use they must be up to an acceptable standard [and for] our highways must be up to international standard.”Moreover, he shared that there are several projects in the works.
“We negotiated three different packages for highways. We are just about completing the first one in terms of Sir George Walter Highway and also the other road that BHM is just about completing,” he said.
The other highways will be a road from Willikies into town and Valley road where “the quality of work will be similar if not higher than the quality of work we have seen on the BHM roads.”Those projects, he added, will take about two years to complete.
In addition, the public works Minister said: “we have some economically important roads that we want to do. You have heard before that we need to connect Old Road to English Harbour and open up all those lands. We need to connect Frairs Hill road to that other road you have running through that constituency.”
According to him, those developments will create farming and economic opportunities.