$272M to correct defects, complete Ministry of Health head office by mid-year

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Completion of the Ministry of Health’s head office on Brickdam, Georgetown is expected to be achieved by July this year.

The government has set aside a total of $259 million in the 2022 budget to cater for this with an additional $13 million allocated for the supervising firm.

This announcement was made on Thursday by Minister of Health Dr. Frank Anthony who also recalled the termination of the contract last year with Chung’s Global Enterprise over breaches to its agreement.

The government had retendered the contract in April of 2021 but no announcement has been made on the selection of a new construction firm.

Dr. Anthony said among the monies allocated would be to address the defects of the last contractor.

Minister of Health Dr. Frank Anthony addressing the Mental Health and Well-Being conference (Photo: DPI/ November 8, 2021)

“It’s an APNU+AFC project and we are now trying to fix it and correct all of the defects that were there.

“Right now, we are on schedule based on the timeline,” Dr. Anthony added.

Chung’s was awarded the contract in 2017, to construct the Public Health Ministry’s head office building at Lot 1 Brickdam to the tune of $356.8 million. Works commenced on July 19, 2018, and the contractor was supposed to complete the project within a year.

However, in September 2020, despite receiving $308.4 million for advance payments and mobilisation expenses, as well as two extensions totalling 317 days, permanent works were 70 per cent completed at the site.

Additionally, the contractor submitted a repriced bill of quantities, demanding an additional sum of $513.3 million on August 3, 2020 – a mere day after the Government officially changed hands with the swearing-in of President Dr Irfaan Ali.

Among the breaches highlighted are the lengthy delay in the completion of the building, and the increase of the prices on the bill of quantities for variations to the contract.

 

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