The rehabilitation of the Lekie Loop is behind schedule, with progress at only 13.41% despite half of the allocated time already used, according to sources close to the project.
Arab Contractors Cameroon, the company responsible for the project, signed a contract in 2022 to upgrade the 81.5-kilometer loop road. The project, budgeted at XAF31 billion, is seen as crucial for facilitating the sale of agricultural products from the Lekié department.
As of January 19, 2024, the project was only 13.41% complete, despite reaching the halfway point of its allocated timeframe. Sources attribute the delays to technical aspects, including additional requirements imposed by the Ministry of Public Works (Mintp) regarding flood zone management.
Arab Contractors Cameroon has completed some initial work, including clearing vegetation and undertaking 18 kilometers of earthworks. They have also built 13 of the 112 planned structures. The company is reportedly expecting a payment of XAF5.3 billion at the beginning of the year to continue work.
The Lekie Loop project has a long history dating back to at least 2016, when a Ministry of Public Works (Mintp) working group estimated its cost at XAF30 billion. Despite its initial proposal, the project remained stalled for several years before finally being launched in 2023.
The road is divided into three sections and is financed by the public investment budgets of Mintp and the Ministry of the Economy, Planning, and Regional Development (Minepat) for 2022, 2023, and 2024. Completion is currently scheduled for December 27, 2024, but it is uncertain whether this deadline can be met given the current progress.
Michel Ange Nga