City Manager's Speech - Taureka Highway Opening



It gives me an immense pleasure to stand before you to deliver my welcome address at this auspicious day of linking our City with my Province. Prime Minister Hon Peter O Neill, Governor Hon Powes Parkop, Minister for Sports and APEC, Hon Justin Tkatchenko, (and other Ministers), Member for Moresby North East Hon Labi Amaiu, NCDC Board members, Chairman, Board and Management of Hebou Groups, Chairman and Management of Bank South Pacific, NCDC management and staffs, Departmental Heads, residents and media.


I am very humbled and honoured to welcome our Prime Minister Hon Peter O Neill without him it would not have been possible to deliver this type of master piece of infrastructure to the City of Port Moresby. I have been associating with our Prime Minister in his different portfolios and I see a passion in him towards his commitment to the nation building. I am very proud to welcome our Prime Minister, a man of Implementation, who opened more infrastructure projects than anyone else throughout the country. Ladies and Gentleman please give a big round of applause to the Prime Minister Hon Peter O Neill.

I would also like to make an official welcome to our own Governor Hon Powes Parkop. Our Governor has been actively lobbying with the Prime Minister and the Government for all the major developments happening here around the city. These projects what we implement is changing the face of the city. I am happy to welcome our action Governor Hon Powes Parkop.

I welcome the Ministers, Local Members of Parliament, the Hebou’s, Chairman Sir Theo Constantinou and their project team, Cardno representatives, the local community and above all the residents of the city residents who are here today.

A special welcome to the Chairman of BSP Sir Kostas Constantinou, CEO Mr Robin Fleming and the senior executives of the Bank South Pacific for funding this project. We would have given a standing ovation had this been an aid, but we all know it’s not a grant but a loan at very competitive rates. BSP was very supportive especially funding an infrastructure project that will not generate direct cash flow to service the debts. BSP accepted investing in these type of corridors that will eventually boost the economic activities in this part of the city and increase the monetary cycle.

Project Background

This project was awarded in October 2015 to Hebou Constructions Ltd at the cost of K145.65 million plus GST plus 15% contingency; and we delivered the project on time within the 18 months construction period. I am happy to announce that this is yet another project that we delivered within the contract sum without any single variation. Out of the 15% contingency, we spent K4 million to construct water mains for Eda Ranu’s future use.

This is a 12 km four lane divided road and with concrete median. We have installed 270 light poles with about 530 energy saving LED lights. We have also constructed about 8.6 km long open line drains. The road used about 170,000 sqm asphalt of 50mm thick ness and 300,000 CBM of approved engineering fill materials.

This road will be part of the City’s outer ring road from Dogura to where we are standing now. I am also aware DoW is planning to link Miline Bay Province with the Central Province somewhere in the Magi Highway. When that happens, this infrastructure will be the future hub of the city. NCDC has also plans to create Special Economic Zones and this area is one of them. This road together with the two other road links that we are designing now (Bautama to 15 Mile and Dogura to Bushwara) will complement either National Government or Central Province’s thrust to create the Central City.

Vote of Thanks

I have to thank lot of people to make our dream possible.

The number one on the list is the person at this centre stage. It’s none other than the Prime Minister. To put it simply, he delivered a lot to the Port Moresby City. NCDC never imagined that the City would have come this far. Hats off to you Prime Minister. We don’t have anything on our list to ask you now. But don’t be at rest; we are preparing a new list.

I don’t have to thank our action Governor because he is part of us. But he deserved a big recognition, as he has been putting lot of pressure on the management to get things done. He is instrumental in the delivery of the water mains in this corridor. So our Governor deserves a standing ovation too. Since it is election time, I did not want to praise these two gentlemen but at the same time, I want to give due credit where it belongs to. We at administration always go by books. When we did the master plan of the road network, we stopped the road at Dogura, just before where NCD Boundary ends. But the Prime Minister through his vision for the future, directed us to break the barrier and go beyond boundaries and that is what you are seeing today. The road ends at Bautama, the future Central City. Again, the Governor also directed to build a corridor and not just road. We resisted as the Power and Water is not NCDC functions, but we listened to the Governor and we have buried 250 mm water main all throughout the 12 km road with crossings for Eda Ranu to connect water to the nearby community and power throughout where community can connect power right at their door steps. All kudos to our action Governor. Together with the 4 lane road, we have delivered water and power along this corridor.

I also thank the local MP Hon Labi Amaiu and the Minister for Sports Hon Justin Tkatchenko for their full support. This road services both the electorates.

I must thank the contractor their sub-contractors and project manager for delivering world class infrastructure. Hebou really lifted their game up with this roads and I commend the Construction Team headed by Jon Brasher. They set the standards really high and we have to cope up with the challenge of delivering all our future projects to this benchmark. The quality they delivered is top of the range. I thank Hebou’s Board, Management and their team for their tireless work that made us proud.

The last one but not the least is our own two members of the Project Coordination Team who are managing all the capital works including this one. They are Mr Ravu Frank and Mr Augustine Ravi. I see them working more than 12 hours a day starting from conceptualisation to the end delivery, meeting all the statutory requirements, compiling paper works, dealing with landowners, dealing with Govt departments, managing the contractors, managing all parties’ expectations. I am also glad to say that these two gentlemen delivered all our projects within the budget and without a single toea variation so far since 2013. I would not have withstood the challenges that Ravu and Augustine face on a daily basis. They need a well-deserved applause. I also would like to thank their remaining Project Team members Bernard Kipit, Steven Kami, Felix Lasou and Mokawau Mukwesipu.

My sincere thanks goes to those who directly or indirectly contributed to the success of this project. They are; Chief Secretary, Departments of Treasury, Planning, Finance, Works, Lands, State Solicitor, NEC, NCDC Management and Board, NCD Physical Planning Team, and of course the BSP Team.

Concluding Remarks

Many of you know that I come from Hula in Central Province. I travel a lot between Hula and Port Moresby; in the last few weeks after the lights were switched on at night and I am reaching Bautama from home, I get a feeling that I am entering a City that is of international standard. The only missing thing is the huge rain trees that used to pave the way for this road. Personally I am committed to replanting the trees. Thank you Prime Minister and Governor for allowing me to leave a legacy through a project that I am personally and emotionally connected to. I appeal to all residents to enjoy this infrastructure and not destroy it. Be proud to own it.

Thank you.

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