Defective roads fault of budget not incompetence  - Minister

Rafael Sabonge.

590Views 0Comments Posted 28/09/2022


Questions about the poor state of the streets in Panama dominated the summons to the plenary of the National Assembly of The Minister of Public Works, Rafael Sabonge, on Tuesday, September 27. He told deputies that the cornerstone in the defective road network is caused by the lack of a budget, not incompetence.

The deputies stressed that in the answers there was no justification for an almost invisible task but he argued that the responsibility falls on the Ministry of Economy and Finance for the cuts.

He said that throughout  Panama there are 20,000 km of roads, which requires resources for the next fiscal year of $42 million, but only $5 million was recommended.

On the issue of damage to vehicles and physical injuries, given the concerns of the legislative body, he said that those affected must appear in person at the Legal Department of the entity to proceed to file a lawsuit.

The appearance of Sabonge who was accompanied by about 8 collaborators, was to answer a 16-question questionnaire.

The head of the MOP maintained that 69.4% of the budget has been executed, including the capital transfer, despite the problems of the Covid-19 pandemic that hit public finances.

Regarding the Corredor de las Playas, he said that the scope of the structure was reduced. Its value is a $158 million investment and he specified that since Monday the teams have been mobilized to continue with the project. On turnkey plans, he assured that nothing has been disbursed in his administration, but they are advancing in that program such as the highway in Vacamonte, Almirante-Bocas del Toro street, Ocú-Las Minas street, the Bridge over the Bayano River, among others.