By Bridgett Milton
Liberia: The House of Representatives Chairperson on Rules, Orders and Administration, Representative Johnson Gwaikolo of Nimba County District # 9, says the flow of water remains a major challenge at the Capitol building.
He says the most embarrassing situation is getting water in public bathrooms at the Capitol.
Speaking to Voice of Liberia radio in Monrovia on Thursday, January 06, 2022, Rep. Gwaikolo, who is also a diplomat and an academician, explained that most of the time the bathrooms in the building are locked because they don’t want visitors to use the facilities in the absence of water.
He says a study was conducted to create boreholes at the Capitol building but they learned that the volume of water that would come from there will not be sufficient to supply the entire building.
Speaking of ongoing renovation at the Capitol, he discloses that US$1.34M was appropriated in the 2021 special national budget to renovate the entire building, including its two old chambers, roofing, water and lighting systems, and to purchase two water trucks.
Commenting on how a foreign company was awarded the renovation contract, leaving local contractors out, he explains that a bidding process was carried out and Delta Architecture Construction Company won the contract to renovate the Capitol building.
According to him, four Liberian companies participated in the bid supervised by the Public Procurement, Concession, Commission (PPCC) but the local companies did not meet the requirements for the contract.
Gwaikolo adds that the work is under the supervision of the Committee on Rules, Order and Administration that he chairs and the renovation is expected to be completed by March 2022.
The toilet facility at the Liberian Legislature has been a serious challenge since the previous administration, in a place where hundreds of visitors pour in and out daily.
There have been countless reports of embarrassment faced by visitors, particularly females, who, when pressed by nature, are constrained to come out and urinate behind containers inside the premises, while others are helplessly transported on motorbikes to public toilets in parts of the city to ease themselves. Editing by Jonathan Browne