7 January 2019

Zimbabwe: Road Rehab Shelved Due to Heavy Rains

The Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development has suspended road rehabilitation projects in the Midlands Province due to heavy rains.

The ministry last year embarked on a massive road rehabilitation programme in the province after Treasury availed $19 million for road repairs. The roads that were being rehabilitated were Mberengwa-Mataga, Mberengwa-West Nicholson, Gokwe-Siyabhuwa and Kwekwe-Nkayi roads.

The ministry was also constructing a bridge that links Gokwe South and Gokwe North at Kawongo along the Nemangwe-Kuwirirana Road.

Midlands provincial roads engineer Mr Denis Mapfurira confirmed that they had stopped working on about five projects in the province saying civil work would commence soon after the heavy rains have stopped.

"Construction has stopped. We usually take our annual break during this time due to the heavy rains. So we have temporarily suspended all road works to allow the heavy rains to pass," he said.

"We have about five projects, two in Mberengwa, two in Gokwe and one in Kwekwe which we have temporarily suspended due to heavy rains. Work will, however, commence once the rains are done," said Eng Mapfurira.

He said although he was yet to get an assessment of the roads in the rainy season, there were, however, some workers on standby to maintain detours and some sections of the roads that need urgent attention.

"We are yet to assess the extent of damage that the rains have caused on the roads so far but we have teams that are on the ground dealing with our detours and responding to emergencies caused by the rains," he said.

Meanwhile, Eng Mapfurira bemoaned lack of foreign currency to purchase most of their raw material.

"Most of our raw material like bitumen and other supplies and spares are imported. Of late, we have been facing serious shortages of foreign currency which has hampered progress."

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