By: M.A. Egge
The Minister of Public Works Hon. Ali Hassan Mohammed has dispelled rumours peddled in the local media purporting that the main Hargeisa Bridge was on the verge of collapsing.
The Minister personally visited the bridge yesterday while accompanied by his namesake Mr. Ali Hassan Osman, the Somaliland Roads Authority chief executive officer.
He directed the limited areas of the bridge that has been damaged to be repaired immediately while saying that his ministry will work jointly with the Hargeisa municipal council.
Hon. Ali said that it was a natural phenomenon for damages to occur to infrastructures anywhere in the aftermath of flash floods or heavy downpours.
The minister disclosed that his departments had already dispatched teams which were divided into various groups to numerous areas in the republic to deal with similar emergencies.
He revealed that a bridge along the Wajaale border was damaged and that the Wajaale road had a section subjected to similar erosion.
“He said that Dila area and Da’arburuq along the Berbera-Hargeisa high way also got parts of the road damaged. So too, adds the minister, have two bridges along the Burao highway suffered similar jolts. These are Lajab and Dubur bridges.
He said that they had contemplated on such eventualities and had steeled themselves against the moments by getting ready before hand.
The latest bridge to have got damaged is the one of Boon.
Hon. Ali said that the road networks connected the country’s regions and district hence their breakdown would affect the economy.
The SRA CEO Mr. Ali Hassan Osman echoed the miniser’s words that they were already embarking on the repairs countrywide and had contemplated on the eventualities.
So too did Eng. Abdkarim of the SRA say that they had put gears in motion.
Without verifying how the authories charged with roads were at standby, local media reports negatively published items that were more malicious than truthful.
They claimed that the Hargeisa Bridge was on the verge of collapsing, a day after strong currents swept beneath it.
The truth is that extra support structures put up almost a decade ago had a portion of its concrete destroyed together with limited embankment gabions put up at the same period.
The minister said that the government will also immediately repair the main water pipe line that serves the southern parts of the city which was swept away. It ran across the riverbed near the main bridge itself.