King: Availability of resources affecting schools

Minister for Infrastructure, Ports, Energy and Labour, Stephenson King has said that the situation facing schools on the Island is the result of the availability of resources.

His comments follow a recent protest by students at the Choiseul Secondary school over conditions at the learning institution.

King told reporters that his Ministry is responsible for executing works that have to be done after resources are made available.

“The Ministry on its own does not determine which schools are to be built, which schools are to be repaired or refurbished,” the former Prime Minister explained.

He said the Choiseul Secondary is a school which is under consideration by the Caribbean Development Bank (CDB).

King disclosed that a number of preparatory exercises must be undertaken in terms of ‘feasibilities’ , procurement of consultants and contractors and the setting of an execution date.

“I know that process has been in the making and the Ministry of Economic Affairs has been challenged with that mandate to interface with the CDB to bring the project to a stage for execution,” the Minister told reporters.

He stated that once the project is at the execution stage, the Ministry of Infrastructure would step in  to provide the necessary technical supervision to ensure that the project is completed within budget.

King revealed that there have been a number of delays since the United Workers Party (UWP) got into government.

Nevertheless he expressed the hope that the delays could be overcome so that the project can be handed over to the Ministry of Infrastructure for supervision.

“Apparently the Ministry of Education has seen now the need for some immediate action – whether it is to relocate the students in temporary quarters or whether to undertake some remedial work to the school plant, bearing in mind  that there is a major project to come on stream valued at seven million or so dollars,” King observed.

He said that the Ministry of Infrastructure has been written to regarding consideration of some of the remedial work to be undertaken.

“We are now in the process of  making the submissions  available to the Prime Minister and Minister for Finance and once the funding is approved then we proceed with the work,” King explained.

 

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