A contractor working on the Dedza-Kasumbu Road has complained about alleged harassment of workers by road users who refuse to use diversions created to facilitate the project.
Briefing Dedza District Council Public Works Committee members who toured the project, Sempha Investment Site agent Musatero Nkhonzi said some road users threaten their workers when they are told to use diversions.
He said: “Some members of our workforce have been threatened with weapons by some individuals who own cars. These people forcefully remove the drums which we have used to close the road as we work on it.”
Nkhonzi said that the situation is impeding progress saying they were supposed to finish by December 27, but this might not be achieved.
Nkhonzi has since asked the district council to intervene in the situation to ensure smooth progress of the project.
Dedza District Public Works Committee chairperson councillor Francis Chimpikizo assured the contractor that the council would involve the police to deal with those responsible.
“It is unfortunate that people are failing to realise that this road will help develop our district. Instead of letting the contractors do their job, some selfish individuals are impeding it,” he said.
Chimpikizo said the local council would go around sensitising residents on the importance of the road so that it should be completed on time.
In his remarks, Dedza District Council building supervisor Uthman Nkhoma urged people to adhere to the road signs put by the contractors, saying delays in the project will make the council lose money through compensations to the contractor.
The six-kilometre road project is being constructed with funds from the World Bank through Agriculture Sector Wide Approach (Aswap).