Zinara disburses $23m for rural roads

Source: Zinara disburses $23m for rural roads | The Sunday Mail February 16, 2020

Zinara disburses $23m for rural roads

Panashe Mabeza

The Zimbabwe National Road Administration (Zinara) has disbursed $22,7 million to the country’s 60 Rural District Councils (RDCs) in order to facilitate the continued rehabilitation of rural roads.

Government considers the country’s road network as vital to promoting industry and commerce, especially as the country primes itself to attain upper-middle-income status by 2030.

Most of the road network is reportedly in bad condition.

A countrywide Visual Road Condition and Inventory Survey, which was carried out in 2016/2017 by the country’s road authorities, indicated that of the country’s 98 000-kilometre road network, 89 percent (78 200 kilometres) is made up of unsurfaced roads, while gravel and earth roads make up 47 479 kilometres and 27 532 kilometres, respectively.

The sealed road network — mainly in urban areas — and the main highways constitute 18 percent or 17 846 kilometres.

Zinara acting chief executive officer Engineer Moses Chigonyati said the money that has been disbursed is part of a $38,4 million resource envelope for rural roads.

“We had budgeted $38,4 million for rural road rehabilitation and of that amount, we have disbursed $22,7 million to 60 RDCs,” Eng Chigonyati said.

“Some of the RDCs started surfacing their centres (growth points) using the money we gave them and are also in the process of gravelling their road networks,” he said.

Zinara’s mandate, Engineer Chigonyati said, was only limited to providing funding for the projects.

RDCs have the leeway to hire both equipment and contractors for roadworks.