‘Will complete repair works in remaining 28 days’
Kohima, Apr 10: Nagaland Minister for Public Works Department, Tongpang Ozukum today affirmed that the People’s Democratic Alliance (PDA) Government is seriously working hard to complete the repair and maintenance of all the district headquarter (DHQ) roads within the next 28 days.
In his maiden interaction with media persons after assuming the office at his official residence here Monday evening, Ozukum reiterated the PDA Government’s declaration following the first cabinet meeting held on March 8 last that ‘Road sector will be one of the top priority of the new Government and Chief Minister Neiphiu announcement to repair and maintain all the district headquarter roads within 60 days.
“Out of 60 days, already 32 days has lapsed and we are left with 28 days… still then we are a new Government and we are sincerely working on it and started the road repair and maintenance works from yesterday,” he said.
“It has been a long felt need of the Naga people for a stable Government and good road sector and therefore the PDA Government is giving much importance to improve the road conditions,” he said adding that the department has started yesterday and working hard to achieve what has been announced to the people.
In this, Tongpang, the first time Minister and former president of apex students’ body in the State – Naga Students’ Federation, appealed to the people of the State to extent all cooperation and support to the Department as due to the narrow road and traffic jams inconvenience will be caused.
He also said that since the district headquarter roads of all the districts would be taken up during the process, repair and maintenance works will be carried out for the colonies and wards. He urged the leaders of the colonies and wards, civil societies and stake holders for smooth completion of the works before the monsoon season within next 28 days.
Asked about the delay in commencement of the works, the Minister said “as a new Government we had to start from the scratch due to huge deficit while in some districts, particularly Mokokchung availability of the stone chippings was a problem”. He said the main problem was fund availability.
PWD Chief Engineer, Limadongdang Jamir highlighted that in conformity with the declaration of the new Government, the department would be carrying forward the repair and maintenance of 217 km road in the 12 district headquarters amounting to Rs 102 crore.
Nonetheless, he said the Government has agree to allot Rs 50 crore out of which Rs 25 crore has been released as the first phase of the works.
He revealed that in the first phase the most important roads in every district headquarters with special focus on Kohima would be taken up from Tuesday.
In this the minister asserted that the Department would continue to pursue for release of more funds to complete the repair and maintenance of the 217 kms of roads in the district headquarters.
Further, the minister maintained that he has also held meetings with the department officers and staff of Kohima and Mokokchung districts, while he would be meeting the PWD department of Dimapur district shortly. He also asserted that he would physically verify the ongoing construction of bridges and also inspect the condition of the bridges in and around Dimapur district.
Meanwhile, Tongpang asserted that the Department would be contracting the repair and maintenance of all the district headquarter roads but would take it up by deploying department engineers, employees and machineries.
He however said in some cases, specially bitumen works expertise of the Government contractors would also considered.
Asked about the delay in taking up the construction of bridge over Sanuorü river, Secretariat road which was damaged due to incessant rain in 2015, the Chief Engineer revealed that the delay was due to landownership problem. He however said that the matter has been resolved and the 25 meter bridge projected at Rs 20 crore would be taken up shortly. (Page News Service)