Mash West Bureau
Makonde Rural District Council has taken delivery of a motorised grader, which it bought using part of the $4,8 million it received under devolution.
Council made an initial deposit early this year and the final payment this month leading to the delivery of the heavy machinery yesterday.
The delivery of the equipment has raised hope that the roads in the district, which are in a deplorable state, will now be attended to.
The council also used part of the funds to drill and install seven solar-powered boreholes and tanks in seven wards and used its own resources for the construction of a classroom block.
Makonde now has two graders which it will share with Mhangura constituency.
Recently, Finance and Economic Development Minister Professor Mthuli Ncube praised Makonde RDC for outperforming other districts nationwide in utilising devolution funds.
“The district has made great strides in the delivery of water, health and education through the use of devolution funds. At least seven wards in the district now have solar-powered boreholes and tanks, while a school is under construction in Ward 18,” said Professor Ncube.
MRDC chairperson, Councillor Simbarashe Ziyambi said the procurement and delivery of the grader was going to improve the state of roads in the entire district.
“We are happy that our motorised grader is now here. We owe it to our President and the First Secretary of our ruling party Zanu PF, Cde Emmerson Mnangagwa who gave us devolution funds which we used to purchase the machine,” Cllr Ziyambi said.
“The coming in of the grader will go a long way in rehabilitating our roads, which are in a bad state.”
MRDC acting chief executive, Mr Tarwirei Taipa said delivery of the motorised grader was delayed by payment challenges after the Zimbabwean dollar was floated leading to the price of the grader going up before the payment went through.
“So there was a difference now in terms of the price that we initially agreed to with the supplier and after the exchange rates shifted,” he said.
In March, Mhangura Farmers Association and some farmers in Makonde constituency raised funds and resources to regrade roads in their areas but their efforts were constantly hampered by constant breakdowns of its old grader.