The Berbice Bridge Company has moved to the High Court in an effort to reverse the move by the Government to take control of the operations of the Bridge.
Earlier this month, the Government through the Minister of Public Infrastructure took over the operations of the bridge over public safety concerns in keeping with the Bridge Act and the contract signed for the public/private partnership.
In its filings, the Bridge Company is asking the Court to issue an order quashing the decision by the Minister to take control of the operations of the bridge.
It also wants an order to be granted quashing the government’s decision to keep the tolls for the bridge in the current form.
Additionally, the Bridge company is seeking an order of prohibition, which would prohibit the Minister of Public Infrastructure from exercising the functions of maintaining and operating the Berbice River Bridge.
The Bridge company is also asking the Court to declare that the Minister has no power under the Berbice River Bridge Act, or otherwise, to approve or reject an increase in tolls by the Bridge company.
The company is also seeking several other orders in relation to the management and operation of the bridge.
The Berbice Bridge Company was seeking to increase the tolls of the bridge by more than 300%. The Government made it clear that it would not have allowed any such increase to go forward.
The Bridge company then made an offer to keep the tolls as is but demanded that the Government extends the life of the agreement for its ownership of the bridge.
The Government’s position was supported by the Opposition, although the Opposition raised some concerns about the takeover.
The laws governing the bridge company allows for the Government to move in and takeover the operations because of public safety concerns.