BY JAIROS SAUNYAMA
THE Zimbabwe National Roads Administration (Zinara) will set up a committee to monitor contractors and roads rehabilitation work to ensure that the country gets quality roads.
Speaking to council officials drawn from Midlands province during a tour of roads under rehabilitation in Mberengwa last week, Zinara board chairperson, Michael Madanha (pictured) said incompetent contractors will be compelled to redo the roads at their own expense.
“I am urging the road authorities to hire experts and qualified personnel in road rehabilitation and construction so that we have quality and durable roads.
After monitoring the roads, if the contractor does a shoddy job, he will redo the roads using his own money. As a new board, we are going to set up a committee that will be monitoring the progress on the ground. This will also see us dealing with corruption,”he said.
A massive road rehabilitation exercise is currently under way across the country with funds being disbursed by Zinara. According to local authorities, fluctuating prices and massive shortages of fuel and cement have been hindering progress in road construction.
Madanha said Zinara has the money for road construction and maintenance and accused councils of not taking it up owing to failure to acquit previous allocations.
Zinara has in the meantime released $240 million for road construction and maintenance to be disbursed to local authorities.
This year’s allocation has increased by more than 40% compared to last year when only $188 million was released.
Local authorities also bemoaned the recently announced monetary policy statement which pegged the United States dollar at 1:2,5 to the real time gross settlement dollars.
Some local authorities said the disbursed funds came when the exchange rate was at 1:1.
Zinara finance director Simon Taranhike said local authorities should use the disbursed money before applying for more.