Remedial works to the more than $728M Kato Secondary School (Region 8) have been completed with a certificate of practical completion expected to be issued tomorrow to the contractor.
After completion, the school was toured by a Ministerial Task Force which comprised officials from the Ministries of Education, Public Infrastructure, and Indigenous Affairs. Among the group was Minister within the Ministry of Public Infrastructure, Annette Ferguson.
The school, which was built by the former administration, was characterized by major defects which included; incomplete electrical and plumbing works; water damage to concrete roof slabs; defective timber floors which were termite-infested; among other issues.
The coalition government had said that given these conditions, they would invest in remedial works, while then Minster of Education, Dr. Rupert Roopnaraine promised that it would be completed in time for the new academic year in September.
Kares Engineering was contracted by the government to execute remedial works while a consulting firm, Vikab, was tasked with ensuring that the remedial works were completed satisfactorily.
Radesh Rameshwar, an engineer of Kares Engineers Inc. expressed gratitude for the opportunity given to the company to remedy the defects identified. Kares Engineering was the contractor which initially constructed the school.
“We are grateful that we were given the process and a chance to correct what was perceived as major faults. Those are corrected and in record time. We were given the defects list by the consultant and we worked to correct those identified as well as other eventualities we found. We had a large work force that worked for eighteen hours daily to complete it” Rameshwar said.
Toshao of Kato, Clifton Pereira, speaking during the tour on Wednesday said that he has seen a lot of noticeable improvements. The Toshao assured that the defects have been remedied and for the village, this was a much-needed move in the right direction.
“We are now anxiously awaiting the September term. It will now end the hardship of the children having to go to region nine for schooling. We welcome it” he said.
The specifications of the school include: fifty six (56) classrooms with a capacity to accommodate at least thirty five (35) students per room, an auditorium, four (4) communal dorms for students, four (4) self-contained matron quarters, eight (8) teachers’ quarters with two bedrooms each, an administration building, thirty-four (34) toilets and urinal facilities, an Information Technology (IT) laboratory to accommodate fifteen (15) work stations and an installed transformer.