Bulawayo City Council (BCC) will embark on a road rehabilitation programme after the government promised to grant them ZWL$11 million towards the project.
The local authority has indicated that it needs US$700 million to rehabilitate its 2389 kilometre road network, the bulk of which is in a dilapidated state.
However, due to funds limitation, the local authority will use the funds from the government to fix major roads.
“We have submitted a report to the government asking for money to fix Masiyephambili drive which is 2,2 kilometres from the traffic lights to the flyover,” said council engineer Howard Sibanda.
“We need ZWL$11 million to fix the road and we have applied for the funds from government and we received our response and we were promised to get the money so I am sure that before I come back again to the funds would have been released.”
Sibanda added that roads are refurbished according to prioritisation to give the city a good image to travellers and foreigners.
“We refurbish our roads according to prioritisation but some of the money that the government awards us is meant to pay for community groups that are employed to fix roads, clean drainages and cut grass by the roads,” he said.
“We have major roads that portray Bulawayo when someone is coming from South Africa and has never been to the city the first thing they see are the major roads which is why we want to fix them so that even though they will see potholes let it be in the suburbs.”
Meanwhile, a resident from Emakhandeni Charles Banda asked City Council to give them gravel to cover roads and look into dealing with haulage trucks and buses which use undesignated roads.
“In Emakhandeni we have a problem with haulage trucks and buses that use undesignated roads and they cause a lot of damage,” said Banda.
“Can the city council please give us gravel to cover potholes because only half a strip of a road is left and how can we deal with these problems because we are worried as residents.”
Eng Sibanda advised residents to report incidences of abuse of roads and noted that there are bylaws in place to deal with such issues.
“Council bylaws do not allow lorries and backyard mechanics because roads were designed for small vehicles, that law is still in place but the council is not enforcing it as of now but lorries and trucks are not allowed to use small roads,” said Eng Sibanda.
“We need you to report the culprits who are breaking the law so that the local authority will deal with them to safeguard our roads.”