Ncube grilled over substandard road works

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Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube

BY HARRIET CHIKANDIWA 
FINANCE minister Mthuli Ncube was on Wednesday grilled in Parliament for awarding tenders to substandard road contractors.

Motorists have complained about the poor workmanship in the ongoing road construction blitz in the urban areas and major highways.

Ncube admitted that the government had been lax in the tender awarding process resulting in some companies with poor or no traceable records winning the contracts.

“Certainly, it is surprising that upon being awarded the tender and being told you can proceed with the job, and then they are unable to do the job because of the quality of equipment,” Ncube said in response.

“Going forward, we need to be stricter in our selection criteria for the contractors to make sure that these fly-by-night type of contractors never get contracts ever again.”

He said government had dispatched engineers to check on the roadworks to ensure contracted companies meet regional and international standards.

“Those, who are not doing their job, their contracts are being cancelled.  I am aware of a few that have been cancelled,” Ncube said.

“As Minister of Finance, I am not happy with the fact that contractors ask for a lot of money, then they do a shoddy job, it is unacceptable and we are taking action through the Transport minister.”

Recently, the government terminated a contract for the rehabilitation of roads in Mashonaland West with a company owned by Zanu PF legislator and businessman Justice Mayor Wadyajena over poor workmanship and failure to meet deadlines.

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