SLRA Denies Cracks on € 11.7 Mabang Bridge  but admits to defective sections on the approach

By Tamba K.Tengbeh

The Sierra Leone Roads Authority (SLRA) has denied allegations on “Crumbling and Cracks” on the newly constructed Mabang bridge making rounds on various WhatsApp groups and Facebook.

The post on Facebook states: “The Ministry of Works, SLRA, CSE, newly constructed bridge is a death trap, thus urgent action is needed! and the other post reads “Newly constructed bridge is crumbling and cracking to pieces, small small! It was on Facebook on 27th September by “Richard ‘Jacky Love’ Bangura.

The Sierra Leone Roads Authority (SLRA) issued a press statement on 26th September,2022 informing the general public that the cracks on the bridge approach pavement to Mabang Bridge has nothing to do with the structural integrity of the Bridge.

 The statement went further to state that the findings from “our joint visit revealed that the crushed rock and laterite fill beneath the asphalt on the bridge approach from the Songo end has experienced some consolidation. This defect had long been observed during one of our site inspections to the bridge and has been included in the snag list of issues to be addressed by the contractor before the defect liability period ends in July 2023.”

 A joint management team from the Ministry of Works and Public Assets, SLRA, and the contractor, CSE immediately visited the location on Monday, September 26, 2022, to investigate the claims.

 It is contrary to claims made in a video that is being circulated on social media that there are cracks on the bridge which need urgent attention.

The Salone Fact checker team contacted the Communications Specialist at SLRA, Keifala Jaward, who confirmed that the bridge is intact and works have commenced on defective sections of the bridge approach and that the structural integrity of the bridge itself remains sound and safe for vehicular use, not as it was reported on the social media.

On Friday 8th July 2022 President Julius Maada Bio commissioned the newly constructed double lane Mabang Bridge which is now named Koblo-Gulama Bridge across the Ribbi River along the Songo-Moyamba Road. The bridge was funded by the European Union.

The total cost for the bridge is 11.7 million Euro and it was constructed under the “Moyamba Town-Moyamba Junction Road and Bridges Project under the European Union support to the Infrastructure Sector in Sierra Leone.

The bridge is 231 metre spans with composite steel girders, reinforced concrete Deck across the Ribbi River. The bridge construction works also include the construction of 312 metres of paved road for the approaches to the new bridge.

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