Rep. Rustonlyn Dennis Breaks Ground for Bridge Construction
Paynesville – Montserrado County District#4 Representative Rustonlyn Suacoco Dennis has broken ground for the construction of the Pipe Five Bridge, a major route linking several communities in the district.
The ground breaking ceremony for the bridge took place on Saturday, May 26, 2019 in the Soul Clinic community.
The bridge links the Norlvin Town Community, Weinzon Community, Moses Blah Community, Omega Community and the Red Hill community in the district.
The temporary construction of the bridge will be done within a month for the smooth commuting of residents.
The bridge has been damaged for over a year now without the intervention of national government despite several engagements.
The deplorable condition of the bridge is making commuting to school, hospital, market and work places difficult for residents in the communities.
Speaking while breaking grounda, Representative Dennis said she sees the constraints of the people as a burden on her.
“People slipping and falling; someone might want to give birth in the night, older people passing, younger people passing, I do not want casualty,” Rep. Dennis said.
She noted that eventhough the project is expensive and does not fall within her legislative duties, but it is incumbent upon her as a lawmaker to create an enabling environment for her constituents.
“Since we took over December 2018, we have not received a dime from the government of Liberia in a tune of funding for district development, up to now, we have not received a dime in a tune for county development,” she stressed.
The lawmaker said since she wrote the government through the Ministry of Public Works concerning the damaged bridge, it is almost a year now and nothing has been done about the construction of the bridge, prompting her to intervene.
“I did a document and sent it to Public Works, the Ministry of Public Works did not hesitate, they sent their technical team with me and they did an estimate of US$1.3 Million to do this bridge for the people. I told Public Works, looking at the financial constraints and we all are complaining, if you do not want to work in the interest of my people, don’t bring that high amount.
“We went back and then we reduced the budget from US$1.3M to US$700,000.00 plus, but since we did that last year July, August one or two months from now will make us one year since the people have not felt the impact of the government in coming to their needs.”
Rep. Dennis further stated that despite the ground-breaking ceremony for the temporary construction of the bridge, there is still a planned meeting with the Executive for the US$700,000.00 for the construction of the bridge.
“But before the US$700.000.00 comes, what do we cross on to go to school? What do we cross to get to the hospital? And what do we cross on to go to the market? Luckily, we have a contractor from your community, and we agreed for concrete and pipe structures,” she added.
Also speaking, the Chairman of the Norlvin Town Community, James Teah thanked the lawmaker for the project, describing the damgaed bridge as a “Problem for the communities.”
“Thank you for coming and thank you for the effort you have applied. This bridge has been our problem. We’ve been crying to your office, to government from last year up this time.” Chairman Teah said.
Following the ground-breaking ceremony, Rep. Dennis also embarked on a district tour, checking some projects like the Norlvin Town Bridge and the River State Bridge for refurbishing and subsequent construction after the rainy season.
The Norlvin Town Bridge connects the Moses Blah Community, Omega community while the River State Bridge connect the Norlvin Town Community Moses Blah community and other nearby communities in the district.
These bridges are major routes used daily mainly by students, marketers and other residents but have been in deplorable conditions over the years.
It can be recalled, last year a 16-year-old boy drowned to death when he slipped over the River State Bridge and fell in the water without anyone noticing him.
Since the boy’s death, residents of the community have managed to construct a wooden path way to curtail the situation, but the bridge is still in a deplorable condition.