A PART OF OUTGOING PRESIDENT AHMAD TEJAN KABBAH'S SPEECH ON ROAD DEVELOPMENT THAT HAS NEVER BEEN DENIED BY THE SMOKE AND MIRRORS PRESIDENT ERNEST BAI KOROMA
With regard to roads, as soon as the war ended, my government assiduously embarked upon the task of repairing and restoring the road network with the help of the Kuwaiti Fund, BADEA, World Bank, African Development Bank, Islamic Development Bank and the European Union.
The following roads have either been constructed or are under construction:
Work is in progress on several other roads such as the Masiaka-Bo road mainly in the South and the Tokeh-Lumley road in the Western Area, thereby completing the Waterloo-Freetown/Peninsular road.
Funding has been secured for several planned road projects such as
With regards to the Hillside Bye-Pass Road that will run behind Pademba Road Prison and exit behind Kissy Road Cemetery, delay in starting this project has been too long with protracted negotiations with property owners.
We also have funding for the construction of 1,150 kilometer of feeder roads throughout the provinces, as an integral part of our food security programme.
Further, I strongly recommend to you Mr. President, to pay particular attention to the Kenema-Koindu road, for which funding is secured from four Arab countries and OPEC, and tender documents are under preparation. The Kenema-Koindu road deserves special mention. Apart from its strategic and security importance, the Koindu market came into existence in 1932, the year in which I was born, that is over 75 years ago. It was an initiative of the people who lived in the area bordering Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone. It developed into a full scale international market attracting traders from as far as the Ivory Coast. It would not be an exaggeration to state that it was the precursor of our Mano River Union today which only came into existence in 1975.
Two years ago Parliamentarians, elders and prominent citizens on either side of the Moa/Makona River, formed the Makona River Union. Its second general assembly in Koindu was graced by the heads of State of the three countries. At that summit a resolution was presented by the Assembly to further consolidate the Union. In addition to the international market in Koindu, a Technical/Vocational Institute and a General Referral hospital in Foya Kama in Liberia and in Nongowa in Guinea respectively were recommended.
The National Commission for Social Action (NaCSA) has already allocated seed money for the construction of a modern international market in Koindu. Your Excellency may wish to pursue this matter further with your colleagues especially after your recent interaction with them.
Let me also add that feasibility studies for the Freetown-Lungi link road, the Lungi-Port Loko road and the Bandajuma-Mano River Bridge road have been completed and it is now urgent to secure funding for their construction.
Perhaps, you may want to consider the involvement of the private sector for the early construction of the Freetown-Lungi link road in the context of a toll-system arrangement.