Minister Anthony pleased with Umana Yana rehab works


Minister of Culture, Youth and Sport, Dr. Frank Anthony yesterday visited the Umana Yana at the northern end of High Street and Battery Road to oversee the rehabilitation works being done on the benab.
A $16M contract was awarded to the Captain of Gunn’s Strip, Paul Chekema, and his team by the Ministry to rehabilitate the benab.
Minister Anthony said that his Ministry is pleased with the work that is being done and Chekema and his team have been working hard to complete the repairs for the schedule deadline.
Minister Anthony also commended the team for their professionalism and commitment to their work.
Permanent Secretary of the Ministry, Alfred King, said that tourists have been visiting the Umana Yana over a number of years and because of the national importance of the benab, the ministry will also be refurbishing the entire structure.
Chekema said that the repairs commenced on July 28 instead of July 16 because of the delay in securing materials due to heavy rainfall.

But despite the late start, the rehabilitation work is still scheduled to be completed by its deadline on August 16, and 35 persons are working to realize this.
Chekema noted that 50 percent of the work is completed and it will take approximately 500,000 leaves to rehabilitate the roof of the benab.
The Umana Yana was initially constructed by Chief Elka and more than 60 Wai Wais in 1972.
The construction took 80 days and was completed at a cost of $26000.
It was at the newly constructed Umana Yana that the first meeting of the Non- Aligned Nations was held in the same year. (GINA)