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Dipcon gets another chance


Ten months after Prime Minister Dr. Ralph Gonsalves publicly lambasted Dipcon Engineering, a Trinidadian firm, for failing to keep its deadline to complete Phase One of the Windward Highway – a portion of road running from Brownstown to San Souci – the Tenders’ Board has awarded the same firm a contract to do another section of the Windward Highway despite its tardiness in the past.{{more}}

The disclosure was made by Dr.Gonsalves on Tuesday, June 27. Dr. Gonsalves announced at a press conference held at Cabinet Room that the Central Supplies Tenders Board has approved contracts for the Fancy to Sandy Bay Road Rehabilitation.

“I have been advised that the board has approved the contract to be awarded to Kelectric, about $13million. Rabacca to Sandy Bay, Dipcon Engineering which would be about $9 million, I have been advised,” said Dr. Gonsalves. The project from Diamond to Kingstown, the remaining phase of the Windward Highway was awarded to C.O. Williams at a cost of $21 million.

The project will be funded by the European Union (EU) and does not include the Rabacca Bridge crossing sponsored by the Republic of China on Taiwan.

Last August, eight months after Dipcon failed to meet their December 2004 deadline, Dr. Gonsalves went public stating that he was not taking anymore poitical licks for something that he claimed was not his fault.

In November 2003, Dipcon Engineering was awarded the contract to carry out the rehabilitation of roads and structures on this section of the road at a cost of EC$10.2 million.

The company was fined five per cent of the contract which amounted to EC$510,352.26. Back then Prime Minister Dr. Gonsalves said Vincentians would have been lucky if Dipcon Engineering finished the road by September, 2005. The bulk of the road was finished in December, 2005, one year after they were scheduled to finish.