16 Jul 2013 07:54

MAPUTO, Mozambique, July 16 (Bernama) -- The Mozambican government has terminated a contract with the Indian consortium Tecnofab-Goon for its failure to construct a new water treatment plant in the northern city of Nacala, Mozambican news agency, AIM, reported.

According to the Minister of Planning and Development, Aiuba Cuereneia, the action was taken because the work must be completed in September under the conditions of the funding from the Millennium Challenge Account (MCA).

Cuereneia pointed out that the technical staff are ready and all the equipment and materials are available. He therefore saw no justification for the delay in the US$18 million project.

Cited in the daily newspaper “Noticias”, the Minister stated, “we have held various meetings with the company to review the deadline. But unfortunately they have shown themselves to be incapable and we now have no alternative but to hire another company”.

The plant will treat 25,000 cubic metres of water per day for the city of Nacala and the town of Nacala-a-Velha.

The United States government, through the MCA, has made US$506.9 million available to support the Mozambican government’s development strategy in the provinces of Cabo Delgado, Nampula, Niassa and Zambezia.

Completing the projects on schedule is a key condition for Mozambique to become eligible for a second MCA “compact”. Therefore, all work must stop by 22 September 2013 and the MCA has warned that it will not pay for any work carried out after that date.

Several projects funded by the MCA have been finished, including the rehabilitation and expansion of the Nacala dam and the construction of 30 kilometres of water pipeline to Nacala city.

According to the Executive Director of MCA-Mozambique, Paulo Fumane, the remaining projects are on target to be completed on time.

The MCA has funded the Land Tenure Services Project, which has secured land titles for 140,000 people. It also funded the Rural Water Project, which constructed over six hundred water points benefitting more than 300,000 people.

It has financed improved drainage for the cities of Nampula and Quelimane and the rehabilitation of the stretches of highway between Rio Ligonha and Nampula, and Namialo and Rio Lurio.

The MCA also financed the Farmer Income Support Project, which has helped over 277,000 farmers hit by coconut lethal yellowing disease. Six hundred thousand infected coconut trees were cleared and replaced by more than 780,000 seedlings.