President promises to speed up highway along Río San Juan

Dark red line is the national highway 1856 that borders the Río San Juan.

The central government promised to speed up and develop the frontier with Nicaragua. The principal project is the Ruta 1856 that appears to be stalled.

The statement issued under the name of President Laura Chinchilla followed a negative news story Monday in the Spanish-language newspaper La Nación where reporters wrote that the new highway was a mess with pavement already breaking up and many stretches covered only with a thin layer of gravel.

This is the same highway that is involved in a corruption investigation involving two highly placed members of the Consejo Nacional de Vialidad. President Chinchilla pushed through the highway in response to the invasion of a small part of Costa Rica by Nicaraguan soldiers. The invasion and the highway are topics of cases at the International Court of Justice in the Hague.

Ms. Chinchilla called highway officials to a meeting in her office Monday in what appeared to be a response to the news story. Casa Presidencial said she gave instructions to reinforce oversight of public funds. The three entities, the Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes , the Consejo Nacional de Vialidad and the Comisión Nacional de Emergencias were given three days to present a plan of work to get the job done in the next months, said Casa Presidencial.

The president also renewed her commitment to the communities of Delta, Fátima and San Antonio for their development. The previously isolated communities now have electricity and potable water due to the government’s efforts along Nicaragua’s Río San Juan. The idea of the road was to provide trasnport other than the river.

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