16 May 2013

Liberia: Construction Permit Suspended

The Ministry of Public Works has suspended with immediate effective all construction permits in Monrovia and its environs and called on individuals and institutions concerned to abide by the law controlling the construction industry.

Public Works Minister Samuel Kofi Woods said the Ministry's action is based on the disorderly construction of "erratic buildings" in the city of Monrovia and surrounding areas.

Minister Woods said his mandate remains enforced until needed mechanisms are put into place to curtail the construction of buildings that do not meet the approval and involvement of the ministry.

Speaking to reporters Wednesday following inspection of roads projects in Montserrado County, Minister Woods indicated that construction of these "erratic buildings" was undermining the zoning law of the country.

He called on construction companies to obey the law governing the industry or else the ministry would be left with no alternative but to take drastic action against violators by demolishing their structures.

"Those who will violate our stop order must get the message clear. When we give you stop order and you violate them, we will have no choice but to have your structure(s) removed because it is a violation of the law and it is disrespect to constituted authority," Minster Woods emphasized.

However, the Public Woods Minister instructed individuals and companies whose permits are in the possession of the ministry to proceed to the ministry to have their permits reviewed to ensure compliance.

He said until the stop order is lifted, the ministry would ensure that all building permits are made to have their proper zoning, occupancies and building code in line with the country's zoning law.

Minister Woods: "This is very important for all of us... .we hope that everyone involved or doing construction will take heed because if we see you constructing in areas that you are not allowed by law, we will take action; all of these constructions that violate the zoning law must stop until you get permission from the Ministry of Public Works."

However, Minister Woods warned contractors and agents not to obstruct the construction of critical roads in the country.

According to him, due to the critical need of making roads accessible for all Liberian people, it was unhealthy for anyone to impede the works of the ministry by building in areas that violate the law.

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