Japanese envoys have commended the outcome of the Masauko Chipembere Highway project, saying it has eased challenges motorists and pedestrians were facing when travelling between Limbe and Blantyre central business district.
The remarks were made yesterday when members of the House of Councillors of the Liberal Democratic Party of Japan toured the road to appreciate progress on the project funded by a Japanese government grant.
“This is a wonderful project because I have seen that the roads have been widened to four lanes in total, and then it has reduced congestion and traffic accidents which were very problematic,” head of the delegation, Masahisa Sato, said.
He said they have taken note of the needs and challenges for which they will consult the Japanese Embassy and Japan International Cooperation Agency (Jica) on some future projects in the country.
Sato further said they plan to focus on some of the key areas the Japanese government dwells on.
“The key pillars of Japanese assistance are infrastructure, agriculture, health, hygiene and we also focus on human capacity building. We very much look forward to conducting cooperation and assistance to these areas,” explained Sato.
Blantyre City Council director of engineering services Grant Sichali said there has been significant change despite the challenges that have been faced with the project.
“Generally, in construction there are problems and we faced some challenges but, nevertheless, the project is complete by now. As I am talking now, in this last phase there are no problems, everything is intact. So, I can say it is an achievement,” he said.
Sichali also said the Masauko Chipembere Highway cannot be compared to any other road as it is of high quality.
He said the flow of traffic has improved as compared to when the road was a single lane which posed numerous challenges to motorists. n