Nando Bodha, ministre du Transport et du Traffic routier, a décliné l’invitation des trois élus de la circonscription No 18 (Belle Rose/Quatre Bornes) pour une réunion ce vendredi 4 avril 2019 pour discuter des problèmes liés aux travaux du Metro Express dans la région. Le ministre avait pourtant auparavant promis d’assister à cette réunion, mais il l’a annulée parce que les trois élus ont posé comme condition la publication du rapport EIA. Selon le ministre, cette requête ne peut aboutir car le conseil d’administration de MEL n’a pas donné son aval.
Il explique que tous les éléments de l’EIA ont été intégrés dans le « Environmental Management Plan » de Larsen and Toubro, dont la supervision est assurée par la Singapore Cooperation Enterprise et RITES.
« Je note aussi que les propos des élus ne prêtent pas à une concertation constructive mais relèvent plutôt d’une stratégie purement politique. Je reste à leur disposition pour répondre aux questions relevant à la réalisation du projet. Ainsi, nous allons démarrer la semaine prochaine, une large concertation auprès des différents « stakeholders ». Je maintiens que les travaux vont se faire dans les meilleures conditions et que nous serons à l’écoute de toute doléance et proposition dans une concertation constructive. Nous allons démarrer une campagne de sensibilisation à partir de la semaine prochaine, » a declaré le ministre Bodha.
Le ministre a également répondu à une lettre au Leader de l’Opposition, Xavier-Luc Duval. Voir l’intégralité de la lettre ci-dessous.
05 April 2019
The Hon.Charles Gaetan Xavier-Luc Duval,GCSK, MP
Leader of Opposition
Office of Leader of Opposition
I refer to your letter dated 4 April 2019.
2. Following your request and elected Members of the Legislative Assembly for Quatre Bornes, I did agree to meet you and the Councillors today. However, I note in your letter addressed to me, that one of the conditions of the meeting of today is that a full copy of the EIA report be submitted at the beginning of the meeting.
3. You will remember that I did inform in reply to the Private Notice Question of 09 November 2018 that the Metro Express Project has been delisted from the requirements of having an EIA by way of regulations under Section (96) (1) and 2(a) of the Environment Act 2002. With delisting, Metro Express Limited had no obligation to undertake an EIA for the Project. However, as a precautionary measure, Government agreed to Metro Express Limited having an Environment Impact Assessment report to be used as a benchmark for all environmental issues. Therefore, the EIA report from SCE is an internal working document of MEL.
4. I also deposited 3 documents as follows:
(i) the Request for Proposal made to Afcons and Larsen and Toubro Ltd as regards the conditions laid in respect to Environmental Mitigating Measures;
ii) the Environmental Management Plan of Larsen and Toubro Ltd; and
iii) the Executive Summary of the EIA Report.
5. I have been advised that the EIA, prepared by the SCE, contains a checklist of measures, as well as a monitoring regime, for the contractor to be assessed against. Larsen and Toubro Ltd has acknowledged and confirmed that the recommendations of the EIA Report will be incorporated in its Environmental Management Plan is so far as they are within the scope of the Employer’s Requirements.
6. Further, the SCE has confirmed that the Contractor, Larsen and Toubro Ltd has generally adequately addressed the relevant environmental impacts as a result of its construction and project activities. Some limitations were identified and further recommendations were provided in the EIA for the contractor to take into account in its environmental management and planning.
7. I also informed that the Metro Express Limited was requested to consider the possibility of laying the document at the National Assembly.
8. The Board of Metro Express Limited considered the request at its meeting of 20 November 2018 and was advised that releasing the EIA Report will give rise to unwanted attacks against the project and jeopardise its timely completion within the contract budget. Moreover, the foregoing would defeat the whole rationale of the Project being delisted in the first place and that the works were being closely monitored by Rites Ltd and Singapore Cooperation Enterprise.
9. Due consideration is being given to all environmental, social and economic aspects while implementing the project in the best interest of the inhabitants of Quatre Bornes and the superior interest of the country. It is noted that I initially invited you to a meeting in my office on 29 March 2019 but you refused to attend same. It is further noted that hostile statements have been made on the radio this morning by Honourable Boolell. In such circumstances, it is felt that a constructive consultation and fruitful dialogue cannot take place.
10. I nevertheless reiterate the invitation to meet you and your colleagues at the Ministry.