Govt moves to rehabilitate roads in other cities, towns

Source: The Herald – Breaking news.

Govt moves to rehabilitate roads in other cities, towns 
Transport and Infrastructural Development Minister Felix Mhona (third from right), Permanent Secretary Engineer Joy Makumbe (centre) and Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution for Harare Metropolitan Province Charles Tawengwa (second from left) tour Julius Nyerere Way which is under rehabilitation in Harare yesterday. – Picture Innocent Makawa

Freeman Razemba Senior Reporter

GOVERNMENT will soon rehabilitate and construct roads in the country’s major cities and towns which have been neglected by opposition-run local authorities for the past 20 years.

Despite receiving disbursements from the Zimbabwe National Road Authority and also revenue from ratepayers, most local authorities have been neglecting service delivery, and now the Government is stepping in.

Yesterday, Transport and Infrastructural Development Minister Felix Mhona and Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution for Harare Metropolitan Province Charles Tavengwa, among other senior Government officials, toured some roads in and around Harare that are being constructed.

In an interview, Minister Mhona said in any given economy, good infrastructure is critical and the Second Republic is determined to see to it that roads are improved.

“Today we are here, remember a month ago we were in Mapinga doing a tour of Harare-Chirundu Road, but we promised the people of Zimbabwe that it wasn’t going to start from Mapinga but here from the main Post Office. This section is being done by Fossil and we are saying to the people of Zimbabwe that whenever we measure our roads they start from the Main Post Office and that’s why we are here.

“And we are demonstrating to the people of Zimbabwe that when we say we have a listening President, Cde Dr Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa, what we mean is that in any given economy you need good infrastructure and the idea of the Second Republic is to run the trajectory of enhancing our infrastructure and today you have seen that we are reclaiming the roads.

“Allow me to say to the people of Zimbabwe, we are not just doing this willy-nilly to say we no longer need this road but the tonnage that is going to use this road is what has necessitated this reclamation of the tarred road,” he said.

Minister Mhona said the idea of doing the tours was to demonstrate the work ethic of the Second Republic.

“And you will see us, not only in Harare but also in other provinces and I am sure next week or so we will be in Buhera. Remember His Excellency promised the people of Buhera that we are going to rehabilitate Buhera, Birchenough-Murambinda Road. And I also want to say to the people of Zimbabwe and in particular to the people of Buhera that we are descending on Buhera just for that noble cause and we are ambassadors of His Excellency Cde Dr Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa. We need to champion and move with speed when it comes to implementation of road infrastructure,” he said.

Minister Mhona said most roads fall under the purview of his ministry but local authorities, like Harare, are in charge of their own roads.

“When you talk of city roads, they are under the purview of the local authorities but for the past 20 years, we have seen that our roads were neglected in cities. And His Excellency, the listening President, said we cannot continue watching and we need to move on. Others are saying it’s because of SADC (summit) but SADC will come and go, we need good infrastructure when it comes to our roads in cities.

“But we are here again saying, as we rehabilitate the Harare-Chirundu highway, we are also going to be covering over 40 roads within the greater Harare area. So we have just started here and by next week we will be opening this road to traffic to demonstrate the seriousness that we are taking this assignment as a ministry. And not only Harare, all city local authorities, we will descend on Bulawayo, Gweru, just to mention a few and we will also attend to the rural constituencies where we also come from,” he said.

Speaking at the same occasion, Minister Tavengwa applauded the commitment and support exhibited by central Government to transform city roads.

“We are all here to witness the vision of His Excellency the President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, Cde Dr ED Mnangagwa on road infrastructure development being translated into reality by his capable administration.”

Major roads in Harare have been closed for massive rehabilitation ahead of the 44th SADC Heads of State and Government Summit scheduled to be held in Harare in August.

At least 40 greater roads in and around the city have been lined up for the rehabilitation exercise which is being spearheaded by the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development.