President George weah’s coastal highway project will be implemented as planned despite pessimism that it wouldn’t be a success, Information Minister Eugene Nagbe said Monday in Monrovia.
Senate Pro tempore Albert Chie said on April 24, the Liberian government would be unable to construct the coastal highway that could cover an estimated 350 miles due to geographical and financing constraints.
The Grand Kru County Senator who is also a geologist said the construction of the highway is unrealistic because it is cost intensive and that government does not have the money to implement such capital project.
“When people talk about the coastal highways and if you look at other countries, it can sometime be 500 feet. For us to envisage that we will build such a road from Cape Mount that will cross Monrovia when our coastline is 350 miles, on top these rocks, the road will not be possible, ” Senator Chie said.
“It would be very costly to construct due to the many rivers, marshland and other harsh terrains along the immediate coastline. If we build that it will cost us billions.”
But Minister Nagabe said “the word impossible” does not exist in the President’s DNA and that the project will be executed on schedule. The oil-rich state of Qatar is backing the road construction, he said in Monrovia When he represented the government at a signing ceremony of a bilitary agreement with Qatar.
Minister Nagbe: “Qatar has put money down already to help us support our road project. We are aware of that. The Qatari government has continued to be a strong partner in our infrastructure development.
“So, when we say Mr. President says that he will build a coastal highway to connect the coastal counties, it will happen.
“Grand Bassa, River Cess, Sinoe, Grand Kru and Maryland, those are the coastal counties in Liberia including Montserrado and Grand Cape Mount.
“Montserrado is already connected to Grand Cape Mount, Montserrado is connected to Grand Bassa.
“So, the President comments that Coastal highway will connect Grand Bassa to Sinoe and Sinoe to River Cess and Rice Cess to Grand kru and Grand Kru to Maryland still stands.
“It will happen. Other people can misquote, or distort. The work will go ahead because the world impossible is not in his DNA. We will achieve those things we set out to achieve because we have strong partners like Qatar. Like I said Qatar has committed funding for our infrastructure development especially with road.
President George Weah in January said his road construction project including the coastal highway would cost an estimated US$3billion. The Presidency has announced the near conclusion of a US$536 million loan to commence the project.
Senator Chie is the first senior government officials to express doubt with respect to the successful execution of the coastline road program.
– Festus Poquie