Road rehabilitation on course: Govt

GOVERNMENT has lauded the on-going road rehabilitation programme, saying despite economic challenges, roadworks in each district are going according to plan.

Speaking at a ground-breaking ceremony for the tarring of the 56km Murewa-Macheke Road on Friday, Transport minister Joel Biggie Matiza said there were roadworks currently taking place in each district in the country.

“The road rehabilitation programme is on course and we are sure that by 2030, our road network will meet world standards. As of today, despite the economic challenges, we have managed to have road rehabilitation programmes in each district of the country. The four road authorities are doing a great job and we are seeing massive change as far as the road rehabilitation programme is concerned,” he said.

The Murewa-Macheke Highway will be useful to farmers from both Manicaland and Mashonaland East provinces. The road is in a bad state and heavy road machinery is already on site as the rehabilitation process begins.

Meanwhile, government is currently in talks with a company from Belarus that will be assembling road equipment for local and regional markets, a move that will benefit road authorities in the country.

Speaking during a tour of Mt-Darwin-Mukumbura Road under rehabilitation in Mashonaland Central province recently, Matiza said the development is meant to avoid purchasing fake equipment as well as cutting unnecessary expenses.

“We are in the process of negotiating a joint venture with a company from Belarus that is coming to assemble road equipment and machinery in this country. A number of road authorities are facing challenges in acquiring or hiring equipment while at times we have been securing fictitious equipment. The assembling company will be working hand in hand with the CMED and this will see us getting real equipment for local use,” he said.

A few years ago, government was involved in a road equipment scandal that saw it buying snow graders that are not conducive for local roads.

Road authorities in the country are currently suffering from acute fuel shortages and price distortions that have slowed progress on road works.

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