Public Works Project and [Archives:1998/04/Law & Diplomacy]

January 26 1998

The Local Usage of Sources
The Public Works Project (PWP) is a financial general-service organization that was established by the Loan Agreement No. 36, for the year 1996, between Yemen and The International Development Fund. The PWP aims at constructing essentially urgent projects in the fields of health, education, drinking water, road-building, etc. To do the best to avoid putting this project into the same bureaucratic connection in the government offices, the PWP has given the planning of its projects to the local administration. Each governorate has to send proposals of vitally needed projects. In addition to the construction of these projects, the PWP targets at providing job opportunities for unemployed people, especially the poor laborers.
The PWP operates under the supervision of the Ministry of Planning and is managed by a supreme committee responsible for the fair distribution of the PWP’s budget between the governorates. This committee, chaired by minister Abdulqader Bajammal, is also responsible for approving the documents of all projects that are to be employed.
The PWP budget is very small compared to other projects and funds. It is only 25 million dollars, the value of the above mentioned loan. This money was planned to cover 320 projects. The PWP started operation seriously and surprisingly put forth tenders for its 317 projects within a minimum time of 18 months. Work is going fine and quickly in all governorates. Over half the number were completed and the others will be finished within several months. The PWP budget still has allocation enough to finance another group of 100 projects, all of which were carefully studied and await tender announcement.
These numbers indicate that the PWP has achieved 135% of its targets. In other words, it will employ 120 additional projects. This great success is due to the competition generated among contractors leading them to receive bids of 50% of the equivalent value of the governmental ones. Success is also a direct result of avoiding the bureaucratic routine and commission that usually accompany such projects. This success is also accredited to the World Bank. PWP forms the strongest point of cooperation between Yemen and the World Bank. The projects of the PWP are visible to people all over the country. In each district, there exists one or two projects. It is worth saying that the PWP is one of the main factors that enabled the government to gain confidence in the donations conference in the Hague and Paris Club. It can, in the long term, enable the government to gain the people’s confidence and support.
Many people started to compare PWP to the Investment Program of the General State Budget. It is certainly a very important dimension towards development. Many experts consider that within 6 years of PWP’s consistent works, the infrastructure of Yemen will be fulfilled. It is clear that it will enable the government to drop many names from its Investment Programs’ long lists. Apart from all these facts, PWP is led by a group of hard working, honest and dedicated young engineers, who don’t believe in propaganda. They work silently and contact the press only for the tenders. To conclude, one should say a big ‘Thank You’ to this small number of engineers, who are working endlessly all over the country. They should be honored by the people and the government.
Ali Abdullah Al-Ghail, Sana’a University (former member of parliament)