Government plans to construct permanent structures on Thabwa-Masenjere-Fatima Road which was heavily damaged during the January floods that affected 1 220.53 kilometres of road network in the country.
Speaking when he toured the road on Wednesday, Minister of Transport and Public Works Francis Kasaila said government will use resources it has sourced from the World Bank to implement the project.
Said Kasaila: “We have $24 million [about K9.6 billion] under the recovery project for the construction of permanent bridges and other structures from Thabwa to Fatima. We expect that in the next three to four months, people will begin to see progress. The permanent structures will ensure that people can still use the road even when it rains.”
Commenting on the emergency works on damaged sections that were washed away, Kasaila said government has $450 000 (about K180 million) sourced from the Irrigation Rural Livelihoods and Agriculture Development Project (Irladp), that is being channelled towards short-term intervention measures to open up the road to traffic by the end of June.
Member of Parliament (MP) for Nsanje North Esther Mcheka-Chilenje said the damaged road network has negatively impacted people’s including access to health services.
She appealed to government to speed up the process in order to normalise people’s lives.
The minister, officials from the ministry and Roads Authority (RA) had to endure an almost two-hour boat and motor bike ride to reach to some of the affected areas as Ruo River has rendered some places inaccessible by motor vehicle.