US$88, 118.07 School Project Abandoned In Margibi County-Citizens Blamed Former Supt. John Z. Buw

The Monrovia Times Newspaper has gathered that a school project worth eighty-eight thousand one hundred and eighteen United States dollars seven cent (US$88,118.07) has been abandoned in Gibi District, Margibi County.

The project according to report was awarded to a construction firm named and styled “MOBEL Inc.” by Margibi County former Superintendent John Zubah Buway since 2015, one of the longest-serving government officials in the Ellen Johnson Sirleaf led-administration.

MOBEL Inc. is owned and operated by Mr. Moses Darmoe, an ally to the former Speaker and now Managing Director of the Liberia Civil Aviation Authority James Emmanuel Nuquay.

Former Superintendent Buway’s turning over note presented to the current Superintendent Jerry Varnie is quoted as saying the Gawor Carter Elementary School was one of the projects initiated by his leadership and since most of the challenges for project speedy implementation were due to adequate fund delay; he decided to change the mode of payments to contractors by paying the total contract cost immediately after the procurement process.

He said in the note that the contractor was paid in full but failed to start due to confusion by the project direct beneficiaries over a new location instead of the place previously identified, but an eminent citizen of the area; elder Gawor Carter denied Mr. Buway’s assertion.

According to the former Superintendent in the document, the contractor was ever ready to start the project as soon as the matter was settled by residents of the area.

Not only that, the former Margibi Boss asserted in the note that full payments were also made to contractors for projects but those projects are yet to be completed. One of said project is the Unification Town Hall which the Superintendent said started but interferences by stakeholders brought delay in its speedy implementation and the legal action that was taken by the management of the Roberts International Airport against the contractor over land ownership.

Other projects were reportedly done with others being started but the County is said to be indebted to contractors who started and completed some of those projects.

The County owed the Contractor (United Brother Inc.) who started the E.J. Yancy Junior and Senior High complex located on the Borlorla Road the amount of US$35,521.08. The County is also indebted to Mr. Stanley Sammer of CBI about US$24,000.07 for the Lango Lippaye additional classrooms and auditorium project among others.

What remains unknown to the public is when the Gawor Carter project will kick-off, when unfinished projects will be completed and if the amount paid for the Gawor Carter project is still in the possession of the contractor.

This Paper has reliably learned that about thirty-five thousand United States dollars (US$35, 00) is being used by the contractor only for the purpose of clearing the project site.

Citizens are also asking why the amount given for the Gawor Carter project was not used to pay those contractors that the County is indebted to.

The citizens on a local radio show “Day Break Margibi” also shifting the blame on the former Superintendent for the delay in the implementation of the Gawor Carter project. Many of them who called on the show said the delay in the project implementation is the result of the full payment of money to the contractor without him starting the project.

When contacted, the CEO of MOBEL Inc. Moses Darmoe denied using thirty-five thousand United States dollars to do the clearing. Mr. Darmoe indicated that the amount was used to do clearing, purchase sand, crush rocks and cement.

He further disclosed that the delay in the implementation of the project did emanate from him but was as the result of communication he received from the former Superintendent asking him to halt the project on grounds that there was conflict among beneficiaries of the project as to the area the school should be constructed.

Moses Darmoe revealed that from the day he was asked to halt the project up to the end of the tenure of the former Superintendent, he was not notified whether the issue was settled or he should start the project.

He also mentioned that when Supt. Jerry Varnie took over the leadership of the County, he (Darmoe) prepared and submitted a document to (Jerry Varnie). The MOBEL Inc. Boss then said the project will kick-off in October of 2019.

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