Social media is awash with impressive videos of two major bridges – Magbele in the North and Mabang in the South. The two bridges are major connecting links between the western area and the south on one hand and the western area and the north on the other. They are set to be fully completed for use by commuters in April/May this year at the very latest.


For 11 years, the erstwhile government of Ernest Bai Koroma failed to improve on those roads even though road infrastructure and electricity were his flagship programs. For 11 years Ernest Bai Koroma literally caused the death of many people on those two roads. Under his watch, the Magbele bridge became a death trap even though he used it to go to his home town of Makeni every weekend. Ernest Bai Koroma was so insensitive to the needs of his people that at one time over a dozen people perished in an accident in the Mabgele bridge. A construction company’s heavy-duty machine got stuck there as well leading to enormous strain on people using that route as they had to either go through Lungi or through Mile 91. Eventually the machine was tumbled into the river causing huge losses to the company whose owner was visibly in tears as his costly machine was thrown into the river to make way for Ernest Bai Koroma to go to Makeni for his usual weekend jamboree.

The Mabang Bridge also had a similar pattern of claiming lives. It showed signs of collapse but the corrupt government of former President Ernest Bai Koroma never paid heed to the warning until it eventually caved in one fatal day leading to loss of lives and property and heaping mobility burden on people.


The contract for the formulation study (feasibility and details) and works supervision for the reconstruction of the Moyamba – Moyamba Junction Road and bridges commenced in 2011 (EBK era) and concluded on March 23, 2012.

The two contracts for the Moyamba Junction to Moyamba Town road on one hand and major bridges of Mabang and Magbele were put out for tender by competent companies on about 2014. Ernest Bai Koroma and his cronies in a bid to fleece the two peoples of the north and south manipulated the award of the contracts and gave it to a rogue Portuguese company MSF Engegneria in 2015. Because of the incompetence of the company and its inability to undertake such construction work, their contract was terminated on July 28th 2017. It is important to note that the two affected areas are the so-called strongholds of the APC. The linking constituency through which the Mabang bridge runs Constituency 93 is the only seat APC wins in that district. For the rest of the north, we all know their political inclination.

However, when you have an insensitive leader like Ernest Bai Koroma the interest of his people is secondary and just what lines his pocket with ill-gotten wealth is his concern. Ernest Bai Koroma and the APC had from 2014 to 2017 to complete these bridges but nothing was done to make it a reality for those people. Instead, a rogue and surrogate company of his was awarded the contract, depriving people of a basic facility, which eventually led to accidents and deaths of deprived people.

To further show the callous and insincere nature of this rogue company MSF, the camp site for construction work of a road and bridge in Moyamba was not set up in Moyamba but in a town Malempeh which is in the Tonkolili district. This was deliberately done to deprive the people of Moyamba of the camp site facilities and jobs for the boys.

 $800,000 LOSSES

Due to the non-performance of EBK’s rogue company and the inevitable termination of their contract in 2017, the government of President Julius Maada Bio that inherited this problem in 2018 incurred huge losses to the tune of $800,000. President Julius Maada Bio’s government had to pay all debts incurred by EBK’s rogue MSF Company including arrears for workers, fuel, land compensation etc.

There was eventually a prelaunch of the works tender and CSE were awarded the contract in 2018.


Because of the untidy nature of the initial contact for the construction of these two works, operations did not kick off until 2018, when President Julius Maada Bio’s government had been installed by the people of Sierra Leone.

Under President Julius Maada Bio’s government, CSE had to start afresh, construction work in 2018 and built a new base camp in Moyamba Town, the beneficiary district of the project. Unlike the MSF base camp for a project in Moyamba which was located in Malempeh in the Tonkolili district, CSE had theirs in Moyamba which benefited the people of that town.

The company is now set to complete Magbele Bridge which is about 97% complete as at now; and Mabang Bridge which is about 87% complete currently. With the seriousness of the government of President Julius Maada Bio and the effective monitoring by the National Authorizing Office, Magbele bridge leading to Ernest Bai Koroma’s home is set to be commissioned in April at the very latest and Mabang bridge will be handed over in May barring any unforeseen circumstances.

A-Z Newspaper reports that, because of the callous and insensitive instincts of former President Ernest Bai Koroma, it has taken the country over 8 years to construct roads and bridges that are less than 100 kilometers long. Under the astute leadership of President Bio, this seemingly impossible feat has been achieved in less than four years.

In fact, had it not been for COVID-19 which disrupted movement of experts in 2020 and 2021 both bridges would have been completed way before now.

We hope after their commissioning former President Ernest Bai Koroma will not shamelessly want to lay claims to it as he did with the CLSG TRANSCO light commissioning in December last year.