Potholes now killing 5 people everyday

TRAFFIC fatalities are continuing to surge, with Zimbabwe losing at least five people – mostly aged between 20 and 45 – per day in accidents, 90 percent of which are blamed on human error and poor state of the roads, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure Development, Mr Munesushe Munodawafa, has said.

In an interview on the sidelines of the launch of the Village Road Safety Awareness in Buhera, Mr Munodawafa, said Government had mobilised $20 million to repair roads damaged by the incessant rains. He said the damage was estimated at $100 million.

“The ministry is rolling out a project to clear the servitude of the road as the tall grass and bushes are posing a danger to motorists. Statistics show that we are losing at least five people on the Zimbabwean roads every day. We need not to lose those lives because 90 percent of the accidents are as a result of human factor. Most of the victims are between the 20 and 45 age group,” said Mr Munodawafa.

He added that Government was doing everything within its powers to repair damaged road infrastructure.

“The damage on the roads is estimated at $100 million and the treasury has availed $20 million so that rehabilitation work starts. We want to make our road trafficable and more efforts are being made to mobilise additional resources. The $15 million will complement what Zinara is doing. On the rural roads, ground is still wet and we cannot grade or use dozers now as this will make them worse,” said Mr Munodawafa.

The money was released by Treasury last week to rehabilitate the road network damaged by Cyclone Dineo-induced floods that have left some areas impassable as roads and bridges were swept away.

A special taskforce mandated to mobilise resources, comprising of the ministers of Finance, Local Government and Transports has been formed.

He said the money would go to local authorities and other road authorities to clear storm drains, repair damaged bridges in city centres as well as patch potholed roads.