YEKEPA-ArcelorMittal Liberia has commenced rehabilitation work on the access road from the main concession gate passing through Makinto to Sehyee-Geh, two communities situated near Mounts Gangra and Tokadeh in Nimba County.
ArcelorMittal Liberia’s Community Relations Manager Vaanii Kiazolu said his team was excited to work with the community in rehabilitating the road.
The project, he said is also a result of good community relations and engagement, following the recent visits of AML’s CEO Joep Coenen to some communities around Yekepa
Also speaking, Community Relations Supervisor Edmund Saye Gbah said the intervention by AML is part of efforts to address some of the challenges faced by communities near its operations, following a feasibility study.
In separate consultations, Mr. Gbah said residents in both Makinto and Sehyee-Geh agreed in principle to prioritize the road as a major need for intervention, and as AML decided to address their plight, they committed in written words that no citizen will hold the company responsible for crops that may be destroyed in the process of rehabilitation of the road.
The road is a 10-kilometer stretch beginning from the concession and ending at the Old Barracks Gate in Sanniquellie.
According to the Infrastructure Department that is implementing the rehabilitation work, stick bridges on the road will be replaced with culverts and graded to clear and level the road and ensure it is well compacted.
People of the impacted towns are very excited and appreciative of ArcelorMittal.
Nyan M. Flomo, Town Chief of Makinto, expressed that they have faced difficulties traveling on the road for a long time and the work that began on December 22 was a great gift from ArcelorMittal to them.
“We are very thankful to AML for this work that it is beginning on our road. We are fully committed to waiving any crop damage as our own contribution towards this work.
We will work with the company’s team to make sure that nobody hinders this work,” said Town Chief Flomo.
Youth Chairman Otis Gono also said, “What we are seeing today is the great gift ever, because we have suffered on this road and AML is doing it for us. We have a gift for AML upon completing this project.”
Quarter Chief Doris Nyanamah, presenting kola nuts to AML staff on the ground as a way of welcoming them, also expressed gratitude to AML for considering their plight to address it. She said traveling on a motorbike on this road has not been easy, especially during the rainy season.
The 10-kilometer road is the shortest bypass to skip the portion of the main Yekepa road that usually becomes muddy during the rainy season. When completed and it becomes more accessible, it is expected that many people will use it to skip Sehyekimpa to get to Sanniquellie.