Slow work on bridge irks residents
CHARIKAR (Pajhwok): Residents of the Jabalus Saraj district of central Parwan province complain they have been facing problems over the past three years after a key bridge was destroyed to build a new one.
The old bridge in the district centre was destroyed years ago and drivers and people have since been using a dilapidated road, making the environment dusty and creating trouble for residents.
Qand Agha, a 34-year-old who owns a shop in the area, said the bridge connected Kapisa and Panjsher provinces through Jabalus Saraj. Hundreds of vehicles crossed it daily, he added.
He told Pajhwok Afghan News the bridge was destroyed by the Hewadwal Construction Company about three years ago, but the firm had been unable so far to complete the new project.
“Vehicles start raising dust as soon as they divert to the unpaved road, creating problems for us. In peak hours, vehicles find it hard to pass off,” he said, blaming the situation on the company and government.
Another shopkeeper, Mohammad Sharif, said: “Work on the bridge has been slow going and as a result, people’s houses and shops are daily filled with dust.”
But Eng. Abdul Matin, an official at the Hewadwal Construction Company, linked the delay in work to the presence of shops, the now ended electoral deadlock and lack of budget.
He added design of the bridge had been changed by the Ministry of Public Works, thus delaying the release of funds to them.
He claimed 80 percent work on the bridge -- 20 meters lengthy and four metres wide --- had been completed and the rest would be take another two months to complete.
The district chief, Samandar Sikandari, confirmed the bridge’s design had been changed.
Deputy Public Works Minister Ahmad Shah Wahid admitted the project had unnecessarily prolonged. He said the bridge was part of the Jabalus Saraj- Mahmood Raqi road, the contract of which had been awarded to the Hewadwal Company three years back. He said the bridge would be ready until the end of the year.
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