China Railway Construction Engineering Group (CRCEG) resumed work on the road yesterday, hardly a week after the presidential ultimatum to the parties in the contract, to resolve a contractual disputes that had ensued and complete the road project.
Speaking at a function to inaugurate Kigamboni district offices, President Magufuli expressed discontent with the delay of the project due to cost implications.
In a press statement issued yesterday RCEG said: “We wish to express our sincere appreciation and our commitment in fully support the spirit of ‘Hapa Kazi Tu’ and ‘Law Abidance’ reinforced by President John Magufuli to complete the project with first class quality and reasonable cost without delay.’
The contractor stated that the project was delayed partly because of late possession of the site due to pending compensation for the existing houses, graveyard and structures that were located within the right of way. The compensation was completed towards the end of May 2018.
Delay by the employer, NSSF, to re-appoint a new project manager has been given as another reason for the delay in resumption of the construction work. Whereas the previous project managers suspended their supervision services on 1 May 2019, the new manager was appointed only last week.
“It’s only on 14 February 2020 that the employer informed the contractor of the decision to appoint Tanroad as the new project manager who commences work on 17 February 2020,” said the CRCEG statement.
Other reasons given for the delay included late payment to the contractor “ in an unreasonably long time which made the contractor’s cash flow jammed” and delayed approvals for the cost of relocation and protection of infrastructures for service utilities that were located within the right of way, including TAZAMA Oil pipeline, HASS oil pipeline, MOIL oil pipelines and TIPER Water Supply pipeline.
Delayed approval for the cost of relocation of Tanzania Electric Supply Company Limited (TANESCO) power lines was cited as another reason for the delay of the project.
In the meantime, CRCEG has stated that one of the reasons for cost increment of the works was the fact that the road standard applied is the Express Way Standard “which is the highest in Tanzania.”
Cost also increased because there were several areas that were affected by oil residue, thus compelling huge and deep excavation to replace all the oil contaminated soil.
CRCEG further stated that road passes through swampy areas, necessitating excavation and removal of soil materials at swampy areas and replacing the same with rockfill, as part of mechanical stabilization.
There was also additional cost of relocation and protection of infrastructures for service utilities that were located within the right of way, which are all approved by the employer.
The contractor also accused the employer of delaying the payments, something which “unnecessarily” attracted the interest.
There was also excavation to remove unsuitable organic soil material and replace it with inorganic soil, as well as additional works and re-measurement of the true and real quantity on site, that is outlets structure for storm water drainages that were originally omitted in the Bill of Quantities.
The project was suspended in 31 December 2018 following an instruction issued by the project manager, pending resolution of some issues including approvals of additional work items by the employer. “ The pending approvals have not been issued to date,” according to the contractor.