Chinese Company gets red flag for construction works in Savai’i

The Mali’oli’o River gorge at Samalaeulu village where several motorists lost their lives while attempting to cross when the river banks burst.

By Rula Su’a – Vaai

APIA, SAMOA – WEDNESDAY 5 SEPTEMBER 2018: A Chinese Company that won the bid to construct the new access road and bridge crossing at the Mali’oli’o River at Samalae’ulu, Savai’i, has been given the red flag after the World Bank discovered illegal transactions.

The Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure, Papali’i Niko Lee Hang said the Chinese company is based in Fiji, and won the bid over four local construction companies.

“The project is funded by the World Bank so it is up to them, to decide on the winning bidder, and it is also up to them to cancel if they find anything,” said Papali’i.

The job has been awarded to local company, Bluebird Construction.

Bid documents show Bluebird Construction is the second lowest bidder at $7,531,458.10

It is part of a US$26.35 million from the World Bank and Australia’s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) to restore key road sector assets damaged by extreme weather events and to enhance the climate resilience of critical roads and bridges in the country.

The Mali’oli’o River project costs $7.64 million talā. Construction works include demolishing the existing bridge and removal for safe disposal; a new reinforced concrete arch bridge 26m long; constructing new reinforced concrete box bridge 11.4m long; and to construct a new single carriageway chip-seal surfaced road 1.5km long with 3 intersections, drainage, road marking and signage.

The project is expected to be completed next year.