Gov’t didn’t approve Juba-Yei road project

The Minister of Roads and Bridges speaking to the media during an inspection visit to Juba Bor road on Wednesday (Photo: Taban Henry)

By Taban Henry

The Minister of Roads and Bridges on Wednesday said the Juba-Yei-Kaya Highway road project was not approved by the government.

This came after Simon Mijok Mijak inspected the Juba-Bor road construction on Wednesday in order to acquaint himself with the progress of the construction of the road.

Speaking to the media during the visit, Simon Mijok Mijak underlined that the project of Juba-Yei-Kaya highway has not been approved asserting that the contract was not signed.

The National Minister of Roads and Bridges blamed some area MPs from greater Yei constituencies for pronouncing the launch of the road project without the knowledge of his ministry saying up to now the budget is not there.

“The only opportunity is for Juba urban road and Juba-Bor road but Rumbek road nothing has been paid, but we are using the same resources because the same contractor subsidiary is the one responsible for Torit, because for Torit road nothing has been paid” he said.

“We are using parts of this road even Luri we have shifted some money to save lives rather than people dying every year” he added.

Mijok said this is a campaign that needs national wealth sharing that if they have anything here (Juba-Bor road project) can be used for any part of the country.

He added that they have issues of payment citing that the cost per a kilometer is very high. He noted that the embankment and road formation plus the machine they are using is very expensive in the world of which they are buying it from the global market.

“We are not revealing it but it is the best and it comes through a long way to reach us, leave alone the cement and the iron bars and other materials are being imported from outside the country through South Sudanese fund no other foreign support” he added.

The minister stated that they are shifting from military equipment converting T72 into construction equipment; we are not buying any weapon but buying equipment.

“Seeing the black top on the road is not easy this is why I am urging the people of Juba City to take up the responsibility of the road before it is too late because it is a huge investment which the state will never afford but it is the directives of the President, all along still the Ministry of Roads and Bridges is in charge but we will move to other cities, and all the ten States must be asphalt,” he asserted.

Mijok explained why the projects take too long,  saying there are a number of reasons citing that it is not their aspiration to take more time because the contract is for three years.

“One of the difficulties is the cash flow because the money is coming from the government treasury as we all know we have challenges in the country as we have economic challenges so there are issues of cash flow” he noted.

“We have issues of land in Juba as you have seen in Gumbo that is point zero that would have been cleared by now. We also have the construction material difficulties but I thank the community all along because we have been working closely with the contractor to see that when they have the money they response to social cooperate responsibility as you might have seen health centers along the road, water points and schools all are coming from this contract,” Mijok lamented.

The Roads and Bridges’ Minister hinted that they will solve their priorities saying the first point in Gumbo you might have seen a G plus building built for the administration of the payam adding the delay is not their intention but it’s because of the challenges he has mentioned above.

“Certain times there are issues of security on the roads where we have lost some drivers and operators on the roads but where there is no security it will be difficult to work. I therefore thank the company for the resilience as well as the SSPDF, National Security and the police who are working hard to maintain the security along the road,” he added.

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