Gbarpolu County – Locals of Kongba Administrative District in Gbarpolu County say they are please with the rehabilitation of the Mano River Bridge which connects their community with other major towns including Lofa County .
The bridge also connects Liberia with Sierra Leone
Before the rehabilitation of the bridge, travelers faced difficulties, with some commuters using a longer route by travelling through Grand Cape Mount County to avoid the damaged bridge.
Marry Kollie, a trained traditional midwife, said she was happy that the bridge has been fixed.
“At least our bridge is okay now,” Mary said. “Our lawmaker brought some people they put real iron over it”.
She’s expressed relief that the rehabilitated bridge has reduced drivers’ fear of plying the road.
“Our drivers, including NGOs can now move on that iron easy, no more worries, that life threatening bridge is no more.”
Commissioner Richard Fallajuah of Kongba Administrative District said the bridge was reconditioned by Hon. Gertrude T. Larmin, Representative of District #3, Gbarpolu County.
“I have spent almost a week here and monitored the work done on this bridge,” he said, describing the work carried out as “Timely for the huge demand for the movement of people in and out of the district at this critical time.” He stressed that the bridge will allow people commute during the impending 2017 elections process.
He then encouraged locals to take ownership by protecting it.
“This bridge must always be protected by us through brushing around it and also this road. These irons and metals used here must not be removed by bad people for their self gains,” he stressed.
Also, Mr. Varney Gballay, Clan Chief of Jarwajah Clan, said he was happy to see the bridge upgraded again.
“Our drivers will not put us down on that bridge no more,” he said with excitement. “She (Representative Larmin) has finally heard our cries”.
For her part, Hon. Larmin, who also served tGbarpolu County as Superintendent, said although the bridge was reconditioned after the civil war, it later deteriorated.
“That bridge was fixed (rehabilitated) by Hon. Armah Jallah, but he used planks at that time and it was good because the people appreciated it,” she said.
The Gbarpolu County lawmaker disclosed that the bridge initiative is part of her regular developmental agenda for the county.
“Every year the citizens of Kongba will cry, will cry about that bridge and asked me to help do something about that bridge. One day I was going to Kongba, my car could not pass over that bridge so I decided to fix it (the bridge) not using plank again but metal and I have done it for them”.
She said resources used on the project were from her salary which cost her over US$22,000.00, adding that the project was done this Month – February 2017.
The bridge, made of steel, was first constructed by Universal Logging Company (ULC) in 1984.
Report By: Henry Gboluma, Gbarpolu County