Latin American Network Information Center - LANIC

Praises Work; Talks to Press

FL1303191289 Havana Tele-Rebelde Network in Spanish 1249 GMT 13 Mar 89

[Text] Our Commander in Chief Fidel Castro, first secretary of the
Communist Part of Cuba Central Committee and president of the Councils of
State and Ministers, visited Pinar del Rio Province this Saturday.  At the
end of the tour, the leader of the revolution praised the work being
performed in the province and talked to the press.

[Begin recording] [Castro] So, it was not a visit to Pinar del Rio but a
promenade through Pinar del Rio.  Since we finished touring the work being
done in the rice fields early, I said:  Let's see how the road is coming
along.  I got enthused and then I continued on to La Coloma to see how the
work there was coming along.  We then went to Guama and later to the
multiple-use building.  All this was not planned.  He [not further
identified] did not know about my plans; he called you, but he didn't tell
me anything.  I heard you were around here after we came back from the
multiple-use building.

[Unidentified reporter] [Question indistinct]

[Castro] Well, I met with construction workers there and asked them about
the project.  I asked them how it is different from the one in Las Tunas.
I was told that the lattice work system [estereo celosia] was used in Las
Tunas, similar to the one used in Expocuba.  The chief of the enterprise
who is heading the brigade that is building the multiple-use facility says
this one is much prettier and of better quality than the one used with
lattice work but, of course, it it more expensive.  I have a very good
impression of the installation.  It is very pretty.

[Reporter] [Words indistinct] a gymnasium-like atmosphere was created.

[Castro] Yes.

[Reporter] That was created and it is very important for competitions.

[Castro] Yes, basically, it is a great building.  I imagine that the people
from Pinar del Rio are happy that it was completed fast--that it was
completed fast and not that it was built fast.

[Reporter] Commander, your impression about....

[Castro, interrupting] They say it was called the cemetery of the [word
indistinct] crosses.

[Reporter] Your impression about the work being carried out in La Coloma.

[Castro] Very good, very good [repeats].  I believe La Coloma is going to
be turned into a tourist town in some 4 or 5 years.  Las Canas is being
developed together with La Coloma.  Las Canas is going to be a good place
when the dikes are built and what needs to be filled is filled because that
area is infested with mosquitos.  It is not going to be a Varadero.  The
beaches where I used to swim in Mayari, in the Nipe Bay, when I was an
adolescent, a student, did not resemble this one.  This one is 10 times
better than that one, although it is not a Varadero.  I believe that when
some of those areas are filled and when the appropriate installations are
built, Pinar del Rio City will have a great beach nearby.

The ones who moved to Las Canas at one time are going to move to La Coloma
because they were promised houses to La Coloma.  We are going to have a lot
of space there for a good recreational installation for Pinar del Rio.  A
good, although small, brigade is working there.  They had three dump trucks
and we gave them three more.  A lot of land needs to be moved there.

[Reporter] [Question indistinct]

[Castro] The brigade members are also building the sidewalks.  They are
filling and draining the area.  There is no sewage there; there is no
aqueduct.  Everything needs to be built there.  All kinds draining
activities need to be performed there.  They have to look for solutions to
all of their problems.  A dike needs to be built to protect the area from
flooding.  Not only Pinar del Rio but also La Coloma is going to be
protected by the Guama Dam.  There will be no more flooding in Pinar del
Rio.  We will no longer see the spectacle of a cow on the second story of a
hotel.  Flooding will not take place here any longer.  This will stop
flooding.  It will also protect La Coloma.

Undoubtedly, La Coloma is a town that produces a lot for the country.  La
Coloma produces tens of million of dollars in foreign exchange.  Life
conditions were not in line with the contribution they are making to the
country.  I noticed this with the situation that was created by the

I saw that the highway is at a very advanced stage.  They were planning to
complete it by May 1990 and I believe they are going to finish sooner.

All that area is almost filled.  They will finish soon.  Then, part of the
brigade will remain to build the overpasses, the connecting roads, and the
other members of the brigade will build two-way tracks toward Guanajai.
They are already working on the two-way railroad tracks from Havana to
here--two-way tracks [repeats].

So, the province will have not only the four-lane highway but also two-way
railroad tracks from Havana to Pinar del Rio in a relatively short period
of time.  I see that the highway works are very advanced.  I believe they
have some problems getting parts for some equipment, some bulldozers.
Considerations are being made to see if it is more convenient to get the
parts or buy new equipment.  They are making a big effort and that project
is going very well.

Great work has also been done in the Guama Dam.  They have built the Guama
Dam in a short period of time.  They are going to close it in April.  Some
50,000 cubic meters will be kept in a compact area and 22,000 in another
area.  We will have a place to impound 40 million.  The people who are
diverting the water are helping them.  We will be able to use that
water--that which we impound--in Guama next year.

One of the most stimulating projects is the one in La Roja.  We had a
brigade and another one that was incomplete; we completed the one brigade
today (?in addition to) the equipment.  We have two complete brigades.  We
are thinking about organizing two more by the end of the year, by the end
of the year [repeats], for the next dry season.  We will be working with
four large engineer system brigades in La Roja.  It is a magnificent
project.  Some 4 or 5 hectares of flat land are left.  This should increase
yield by 50 percent [words indistinct] and reduce water use by 40 percent.
[end recording]