Minister of Transport and Public Works Ralph Jooma says he is optimistic that the contractor working on the new 15.1 kilometres Dowa-Chezi Road will complete the project by October despite several hurdles.
Speaking after touring the project site on Wednesday, the minister said he was impressed with the progress China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (Malawi) Limited is making.
“This road will improve people’s access to markets and it will reduce time spent on travelling,” said Jooma who was accompanied by China Civils managing director Joe Zhou and Roads Authority (RA) officials during the tour.
In separate interviews, community members said they are already reaping benefits of social-economic transformation following the opening of completed sections of the road.
“We were struggling to transport our produce to the market, especially during the rains. Even taking patients to the hospital was a challenge due to the bad state of the road,” said Manakedwe Kosamu from Imfa Yatonse Village, Traditional Authority Mkupula in Dowa.
The road project is expected to be completed in October this year.
A hilly rocky landscape and heavy rains have posed challenges for the construction of the road which connects Dowa and Salima districts.