Local Government and Housing Minister Emmanuel Chenda has taken a swipe at the Road Development Agency (RDA) for allocating themselves road works contracts that could be done by the many unemployed youths if jobs were to be created.
Mr Chenda said the government had done its job by providing all necessary resources and that it was unacceptable that road construction works were stalling on the basis of lack of funding.
The government through the RDA has embarked on a countrywide Link Zambia 8000 programme for the construction and rehabilitation of Township roads across the country.
The Pave Zambia 2000 project will see the construction of approximately 2000km of township roads across the country using concrete paving blocks and cobblestone technology.
Mr Chenda said the US$348.8 million Lusaka L400 road project was progressing and that the government would engage the RDA and the council to ensure youths benefitted from the projects.
Mr Chenda was speaking during a tour of selected Lusaka roads under the L 400 road project.
“We expected this job to be done by most of our youths so that the jobs are created,’ Mr Chenda said.
Mr Chenda said what was impressing was that the rehabilitation and construction of selected Lusaka urban roads would allow the people of Zambia development as well as conducive environment.
He said the government would continue to focus its efforts on growing the economy.
And RDA has disclosed that the two projects, the L400 and the Pave Zambia 2000 projects were currently running and targeted to rehabilitate not less than 800km of township roads. RDA executive director Bernard Chiwala said the contract for the engineering design, rehabilitation and construction of selected urban roads in Lusaka was awarded to Avic international Project Engineering Company at the contract sum of US$ 348, 293 which was expected to be completed in three years.
Mr Chiwala said three consultants have been engaged to carry out the design review and the supervision of works in various sites.
Mr Chiwala said despite the works being on schedule in most areas, RDA was facing challenges such as relocation of services such as water pipes and Zesco pylons.
Some of the roads that were toured include Mumbwa road, industrial road, Chawama, Lilayi, Bauleni-Ibex among other roads.
President Michael Sata in September 2013 launched the road rehabilitation and construction which has seen a number of roads rehabilited.