18 March 2019

Namibia: N$200 Million Okatana-Endola-Onhuno Road Officially Opened

Vice-President Nangolo Mbumba officially opened the main road (MR 120) that connects the regions of Oshana and Ohangwena on Friday.

During the official opening, Mbumba said the construction of the road was funded by the government to the tune of N$200 million.

At least N$30 million of the total amount was paid to sub-contractors and SMEs, he said. Otesa Engineering (Pty) Ltd was the main contractor of the project.

"This is a worthy investment as it will ensure that our nation reaps the full benefits of the vital transport channels and generate industrial and economic growth to the surrounding areas and to the nation at large," said Mbumba.

The project also employed a total of 600 local people. According to Mbumba, this practice is in line with government's objective to alleviate poverty at all levels of society by providing opportunities that benefit the local population.

Mbumba said the project is one of many achievements recorded in Namibia's road sector over the past 29 years.

"At independence the bitumen standard road network was 4572 kilometres and it has increased to approximately 8500 kilometres which represents an increase of 85.9 percent," he said.

Mbumba further maintained that the newly upgraded road will also stimulate economic growth and enhance the agricultural sector in the northern regions in terms of moving goods and services in the northern regions.

He further said that the MR 120 which is the road from Okatana through Endola to Onhuno, will serve as a link on the Trans Cunene corridor as it connects to Oshikango to Outapi and Ruacana.

"People will now be able to connect from the western part of our country to the east via Eenhana-Okongo-Nkurenkuru-Rundu linking to the Trans Zambezi Highway," said Mbumba.

The vice-president further cautioned the public about vandalism of road signs which according to him has also become a national concern. He warned that such acts constitute criminal behaviour and all measures must be taken to ensure that those caught in acts of vandalism face the full wrath of the law.

Mbumba further assured the public that despite the economic headwinds facing the country the government will ensure that all planned projects are executed and completed.

Roada Authority CEO Conrad Lutombi said the MR 120 is just one of several road construction projects taking place in Ohangwena Region.

According to him, the District Road (DR 3639) which is the gravel road between Oshikongo and Ondobe was recently completed. The works at the two labour-based projects such as DR 3660 (Onakalunga-Epinga) and DR 4113 (Endola-Eembo) will commence as soon as the tender process is completed.

Once funds are made available, RA also plans to rehabilitate the Onhuno-Eenhana road, upgrade to bitumen standard the Oshikango bypass as well as Oshikango-Odibo-Edundja-Ondobe road.

"In 2017, the RA commenced with the construction of access roads in flood-prone areas of Omusati Region as part of the Climate Change Programme which is co-funded by the KfW of Germany. Phase one of this programme is nearing completion, with the construction of 18 access roads to schools and clinics in the Omusati Region covering 78 kilometres of access roads.

"I am very happy to share with you that phase 2 will be rolled out in the Ohangwena Region and 34 access roads will be constructed as part of this programme. This project will also be extended to other regions such as Kavango East and West and the Zambezi Region," said Lutombi.



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