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Ecuadorian team arrives in SVG to commence construction of bridges

Ecuadorian team arrives in SVG to commence construction of bridges

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Prime Minister Dr Ralph Gonsalves is hoping to have President of Ecuador Rafael Correa present in St Vincent and the Grenadines in about eight months time, when the bridge under construction at Hope, Vermont, is scheduled to be officially opened.

Gonsalves expressed {{more}}this wish on Tuesday, October 28, during a ceremony in Vermont, to launch the commencement of the construction of four bridges here, by an army corps of engineers from the South American country.

The three other bridges are to be constructed in Fitz-Hughes, Cacarta, Chateaubelair, and Top Sharpes, Chateaubelair.

“It would be wonderful when we are having the opening of this bridge, which is going to be the longest bridge in St Vincent and the Grenadines… I hope we can have President Correa come here and see what he has done for the people of St Vincent and the Grenadines.

The more than 40 members of the Ecuadorian construction team arrived here on the evening of October 23, joining an advance contingent that had arrived earlier in the month.

The men and women will be working along with Vincentian engineers and labourers to construct the bridges. One team would be working in the Vermont Valley, while another team will work simultaneously in Chateaubelair.

The Prime Minister joined other local officials in thanking Ecuador for their prompt response to the construction needs, following the rains and flooding of December 24, 2013, which destroyed roads and bridges in the areas where the visitors would be working.

“The truth is this; this entire process has been very quick. I went to Ecuador in early July and we are now at the end of October and we have started to work on these bridges; this is absolutely remarkable.

“….Ecuador, I must say, have acted most promptly of all those who have lent a hand of friendship, and I want to thank you for that, and to thank President Correa,” the Prime Minister commented.

Also making remarks at the ceremony were Hudson Nedd, Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Transport and Works, Santiago Martinez Espindola, Minister Counsellor in the Ecuadorian Embassy and Major Manuel Querembas of the Army Corps of Engineers.

Querembas pledged, on behalf of his team, to give their best to the construction process and respect the laws and people of the land.

“….Our country is not giving what it has in excess, but the few we have.

“Day after day my soldiers will sweat…. Moreover, at the end, we will be proud to say we are Ecuadorians and love St Vincent,” Querembas said.

When completed, the bridge at Hope is expected to measure 24 metres long (78 feet), and eight metres (26 feet) wide.

The bridges in Chateaubelair will be Bailey bridges.(JJ)

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