A newly reconstituted 10-member road classification committee to ascertain the ability of contractors to execute projects in the country has been inaugurated in Accra by the Minister of Roads and Highways, Kwasi Amoako-Atta.
Chaired by Dr Abass Awolu, Chief Director of the Ministry, the Committee members include Yaw Tweneboah-Kodua and Dr Michael Bekoe, of the Department of Urban Roads; Mr Omane-Brimpong, Department of Feeder Roads and Mr Collins Donkor of the Ghana Highways Authority.
The rest included Mr Eric Addison, from the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA); Mr Aduni Roland, a representative from the Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) and Ernest Obeng, Secretary to the Committee and Head of Classification from the Ministry.
It would further be responsible for grading of contractors as well as empowering them in undertaking road projects in the country to ensure value-for-money.
In his remarks Friday, Mr Amoako-Atta said the Committee’s mandate would be to relook at the road classifications in the country to ensure the right things were done to ensure the highest standards against mediocrity.
“Henceforth, potential contractors bidding for road contract would have to undergo strict scrutiny adding that said applicants would be vetted and approved by the road classification committee before contracts are awarded”, he emphasised.
He asked members of the committee with its vast array of expertise and knowledge to bear on their work to ensure that there was value-for-money in every road project undertaken by contractors who are certified by them.
Unlike in previous times where certificates were printed and issued to contractors without any rigorous process, this time round, certificates qualifying a road contractor must be fully signed by the Chief Director and chair of the committee
and must be approved by the minister appending his original signature on it.
This is a sharp deviation from where the Minister’s signature was mistakenly fed into the computer Leading to the printing and issuing of certificates persons who did not serve them.
The sector minister implored persons or potential contractors bidding for road to engage with the Ministry and cautioned them not to resort to the use of middlemen or buying of contracts.
“ Road contracts are open to local and foreign contractors provided you have the needed certification, financial muscle and capacity to undertake them,” he added.
The situation where contractors clump projects together at a must be a thing of the past stressing that road contractors should take up projects they were capable of executing and delivering on time.
Mr Amoako-Atta said works abound on the country’s estimated 80, 000 kilometers road network.
These include major road rehabilitation, asphaltic overlay, construction of new roads and airports, bridges, interchanges, drainages and such other structures.
BY NORMAN COOPER
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