Praise for Sinanan as $12m temporary Manzanilla/Mayaro road opens

The content originally appeared on: News Americas Now

Black Immigrant Daily News

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

GREETINGS: Mayaro MP Rushton Paray greets driver Abdul Aziz while Works and Transport Minister Rohan Sinanan looks on during the opening of the temporary Mananilla/Mayaro Road on Monday. Photo Roger Jacob

TWO Opposition MPs – Cumuto/Manzanilla’s Dr Rai Ragbir and Mayaro’s Rushton Paray – heaped praises on Minister of Works and Transport Rohan Sinanan, the ministry and contractors involved in the efforts to get the temporary Manzanilla/Mayaro road opened.

In November, heavy rain led to the collapse of several sections of the roadway which was deemed impassable.

Speaking at the site on Monday morning, Sinanan said he was happy there can once again be “connectivity between Sangre Grande, Mayaro and Manzanilla for schools, hospitals…”

He said two contractors were hired and in total, the temporary access road cost around $12 million, with “some savings,” which will also be used for road-fixing.

He said designs for the permanent road are ongoing and should be completed by either the end of January or the first week of February.

He reminded the public, “This is a very challenging area. You have the Nariva swamp on one side and then you have the ocean on the other side.” Ragbir said November 2022 will “be remembered forever” in the minds of residents in the area.

He described the flooding and eventual road collapse as an apocalypse, but was glad those days are now behind.

“I want to personally thank minister Sinanan and his engineering team for bringing such success to the people of Cumuto/Manzanilla and Mayaro so that we can have a level of continuity.”

ROAD-WORTHY: From left, Mayaro MP Rushton Paray, Works and Transport Minister Rohan Sinanan and Cumuto/Manzanilla MP Dr Rai Ragbir walk along the newly opened temporary Manzanilla/Mayaro Road on Monday. Photo by Roger Jacob

Ragbir also praised the contractors for hiring the “small man too,” including vendors selling crabs and roasted fish. “This is a God-send,” said Ragbir.”

Paray praised contractors for finishing the road quickly, adding that he had doubts when it came to the expected completion date. Paray said he was especially happy for the business community.

“Eighty per cent of the tourism sector depends on support from north Trinidad…This is the link.

“Getting this back up is good news for those (smaller) communities.”

He said he is looking forward to what the engineering solutions will be for the permanent road.

Sinanan said that the idea of using a bailey bridge was no longer considered after the Energy Ministry provided steel sheets to assist with landslips. “This would have saved us a significant amount of money.”

In addition, ditching the bailey bridge also allows all classes of vehicles to use the new road. If the bridge was used, Sinanan said, “The oil sector still would not have had access.”

He said once a week, officials of the ministry will visit the site to ensure things are as they should be and if not, fix it when possible.

He said by the end of February, work on the permanent road should begin.

Chief traffic engineer Adande Piggott reminded drivers that their safety is their personal responsibility.

He said the road was done quickly “to enhance the connectivity before school reopens,” especially as 1,100-1,200 vehicles pass there daily.

He warned against speeding there as “the geometry may not be perfect until it’s permanent.”

Sinanan said all material used for the access road, as well as the sections of the damaged road, will be recycled and reused.

“(We will) take it up, send it through the process and it gives you a stronger road and saves money.”

Drivers who used the road on Monday shouted praises at Sinanan and his team as they passed by.