Poor quality of key road project worries residents
MAHMOOD RAQI (PAN): Officials and residents of central Kapisa province on Thursday said slow-faced and poor quality of work was ongoing on the Jabalus Saraj-Mahmood Raqi road.
Resident Jan Agha believed the project would not be completed within the stipulated timescale due to the slow pace of work. "The company constructing the road doesn't care about quality and is re-asphalting the road during the winter."
Shopkeeper Mohammad Tawas said the road was of a great importance for residents because it connected Jabalus Siraj with the Sarobi district of Kabul. He feared the project could be a failure if the poor quality work went unnoticed.
Provincial council chief Mohammad Hussain Sanji said the project had been given to a firm called the Hewadwal Construction Company, which had a bad reputation. He said the firm was unable to complete the project as expected.
He said the company was bound to construct bridges over the highway under the contract, but it had neglected the issue. "A low quality work on the road is ongoing. It is a key road that should have been given to a reputed firm," the public representative said.
Governor Mehrabuddin Safi said he had a series of meetings the company's officials to insist on speedy and standard work. He vowed to intensify efforts at completing the project successfully.
However, a senior official of the Hewadwal firm, Pakhtunyar Safi rejected people's claims as baseless, saying work on the project was ongoing in line with their policy.
He said they would launch asphalting work once both sides of the road were paved. "Experts at the public works ministry are closely monitoring the construction process and nothing is going wrong," he said.
A contract on the 51-kilometre road, a $25 million project, was signed with the Hewadwal Construction Company in March, 2011.
Deputy public works minister Dr. Ahmad Shah Wahid said his ministry lacked funds, which had a negative impact on the project's implementation.
He said the existence of agriculture lands and shops were hurdle to the speedy work on the road. However, he hoped the problems would be resolved soon. He rejected that cold weather had any negative effects on the construction of bridges. Work on the road was ongoing in accordance with the contract policy, Safi said