–new $23.6M Lethem complex to be completed by December, says CEO
WITH the aim of improving water supply across the hinterland regions, the Guyana Water Incorporated (GWI) has started the construction of permanent offices in those areas.
This is according to Minister of Housing and Water Collin Croal, who, along with Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Shaik Baksh and other officials, visited one of the construction sites at Tabatinga, in Region Nine (Upper Takutu-Upper Essequibo), on Sunday last.
Both GWI and the Central Housing and Planning Authority (CH&PA) are renting spaces in Lethem to serve the people of the region, but with their work plan being expanded, it was deemed that a new facility would be ideal.
After assessing the progress of works at Tabatinga, Baksh said: “I’m very happy to see this structure going up for the greater benefit of the staff and their comfort.”
He related that the facility is being constructed at a prime location, which will ensure convenient access to residents. The minister and CEO are hopeful that the staff could transition to the new Region Nine office by December this year.
Minister Croal said that this move is part of a bigger plan to consolidate the offices that fall under the purview of his ministry.
“As you’re aware, GWI has a number of regional offices which we’re renting, so, in the long term, it is intended for us to have permanent regional offices, so we’ll have savings in our operational costs, but, more importantly, the staff will be comfortable,” the minister related.
He added that the office being established in Tabatinga will not only serve as the commercial office and warehouse for GWI, but it will also house CH&PA staff.
Baksh said that similar construction works are ongoing in Region Five (Mahaica-Berbice), and employees are also expected to occupy the new office there by December. Like the one in Region Nine, it will also accommodate the housing unit that is currently housed at the Regional Democratic Council in Region Five.
According to Baksh, the establishment of an office in Mabaruma, Region One (Barima-Waini), is also on the cards for the near future.
The GWI office in Tabatinga is being constructed to the tune of $23.6 million, $18 million of which is being financed by the GWI, and the remainder by the CH&PA. It is being built with clay and concrete blocks that were purchased from within the region.
Also paying the construction site a visit at the time were Lethem Mayor, John Macedo; Deputy Mayor, Debra King; GWI’s Executive Director of Hinterland Services, Ramchand Jailal and other officials.
The team also paid a visit to the staff of the GWI Lethem Commercial Office, and updated them on the progress of their new building. (DPI)