Opposition Leader, Wale Calls for Transparency in Ministry’s Dealings with Contractors
As the countdown to the Pacific Games in Honiara continues, concerns have been raised by the Leader of the Opposition, Matthew Wale, regarding the allocation of more than SBD $20 million for road maintenance and construction. Documents obtained by the Opposition Office reveal that 23 contracts were awarded to various companies for road maintenance, drainage, concrete footpaths, and line markings from West Honiara to Red Beach Road.
The deteriorating state of roads, particularly in and around Honiara city and westwards, has become a pressing issue as the Games approach. The allocated funds were intended for addressing the poor conditions of roads, including feeder roads, in preparation for the event.
However, Wale expressed his concern about the selection process, pointing out that some of the awarded contracts went to companies that were deregistered or not registered as road construction entities. He questioned the transparency of the selection process and the competency of some of the contracted companies.
“While millions of dollars are allocated for these projects, the Honiara central business precinct is shamefully full of potholes, the West Honiara road is at its worst state, and the feeder roads identified have not been fixed,” Wale remarked.
The Opposition Leader further alleged possible collusion between some contractors and ministry insiders in the contract allocation process. He called for transparency from the Ministry of Infrastructure & Development, urging them to clarify the nature of work each company is undertaking and provide background information on their experience in road maintenance construction.
In an effort to shed light on the matter, the Opposition Leader shared a list of companies and the amounts allocated for their respective contracts:
- Ropiko Enterprise Ltd – Unsealed feeder roads in East Honiara ($551,170).
- TR Group Company – Unsealed feeder roads in East Honiara ($365,140).
- SINBAD Construction – Unsealed feeder roads in East Honiara ($546,662).
- JIEME Construction – Unsealed feeder roads in East Honiara ($502,770.20).
- Nelson Bro Construction – Unsealed feeder roads in East Honiara ($492,320).
- Midwest Company – Unsealed feeder roads in West Honiara ($332,920).
- BHB General Works – Unsealed feeder roads in West Honiara ($751,500).
- Tadiki Holdings – Unsealed feeder roads in West Honiara ($365,820).
- CAPITOL Construction – Unsealed feeder roads in West Honiara ($369,700).
- LOKOL Logistic Service – Unsealed feeder roads in West Honiara ($401,600).
- Build Solomons – Unsealed feeder roads in West Honiara ($343,490).
- XIAO’s Construction Ltd – Sealed feeder roads in West/Central Honiara ($358,130 – $588,400).
- Day-Break Civil Construction – Lio Creek unsealed road ($1,666,880).
- NITER Civil Construction – Honiara Highways drainage maintenance ($2,253,376).
- Sustainable Resources Management Ltd – Periodic and routine maintenance of Red Beach Road ($958,236).
- AP&S Plant Hire – Periodic and routine maintenance of Bloody Ridge Road ($1,388,071.20).
- EMCO Pacific (SI) Ltd – Specific & routine maintenance of selected sealed feeder roads of East/Central Honiara ($4,935,170.50).
- Ultimate Enterprise – Reinstatement of selected concrete footpaths on JICA Phase 2 overlay sections ($1,241,152.50).
- Ultimate Enterprise – Line marking to JICA Phase 1 main sealed road upgrade from HCC roundabout to MFMR at fishing village ($591,254).
Wale has called for accountability and transparency in the execution of these contracts, emphasizing the need for public funds to be used responsibly and efficiently. The Ministry of Infrastructure & Development is urged to address these concerns and provide clarification on the alleged irregularities in the contract allocation process.
Source: Office of the Leader of the Opposition