Zimbabwe President Mnangagwa officially opened the rehabilitated Ngundu-Tanganda highway, a development expected to spur economic activities in the country.
The opening ceremony was also attended by Transport and Infrastructural Development Minister Joel Biggie Matiza, Manicaland Provincial Affairs Minister Dr Ellen Gwaradzimba, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa, and Bitumen World managing director Andre Zietsman.
Ngundu-Tanganda highway was badly damaged due to years of neglect. President Mnangagwa noted that the road had fallen into a state of disrepair and that the delay experienced in rehabilitating the road was occasioned by resource constraints.
“As Government we resolved that we channel the little resources we had towards the rehabilitation of this road in Chipinge. We have completed this road, but it does not end here. We have other areas that were affected by Cyclone Idai in Chipinge and Chimanimani which need our attention. Roads, bridges and schools were destroyed there,” said the President.
The road links Manicaland and Masvingo provinces via Chiredzi. It also connects the Eastern Highlands to South Africa, Zimbabwe’s major trading partner. Total scope of the project was 85km, from the 188km peg to the 273km peg, with the initial 30km being done between February 12, 2018 and and April 10, 2018. A further 55km was done from February 12, 2019 to June 07 same year.
The highway project was implemented by Bitumen World (Pvt) Ltd to the tune of US $20m million. President Mnangagwa noted that the road had fallen into a state of disrepair and that the delay experienced in rehabilitating the road was occasioned by resource constraints.
According to Minister Matiza, the road restores the seamless flow of traffic between Manicaland and Masvingo Provinces and that it is also key to the sustenance of the Chisumbanje ethanol project.
President Mnangagwa also praised the Zimbabwe National Road Administration (Zinara) for being actively on the ground rehabilitating roads.
“We are now confident that we can rehabilitate our roads using money generated locally. All along we thought to rehabilitate roads we needed funds from the US. No! We can do so with our own resources. If there are foreigners who want to assist us we have other roads that need attention,” said President Mnangagwa .