Monday, May 20, 2013

Chama-Matumbo road works excite Chanda
By Jonathan Mukuka and Mirriam Kumwenda in Chama
Sun 19 May 2013, 14:01 CAT

CONSTRUCTION works for the KR371 million, 84 kilometre stretch of the Chama-Matumbo Road linking Northern, Muchinga and Eastern provinces are progressing well.

The works, under lot 2 of the Chama-Matumbo road project stretching from Muyombe junction passing through the boma to Luangwa Bridge, are part of the Link Zambia 8,000 Project under the Road Development Agency (RDA) being undertaken by China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation.

China Jiangxi Limited has been engaged to do lot 1 of the project at a cost of over KR399 million, from Matumbo junction to Luangwa River, covering a total distance of 115 km.

The scope of the works for the two projects include upgrading of the road from gravel to bituminous.

Muchinga Province minister Colonel Gerry Chanda inspected the works last week during his familiarisation tour of Chama district.

Col Chanda said he was happy that the works were taking shape adding that with the rain season now coming to an end, the government expected more progress on the road construction.

Col Chanda who was accompanied by Chama district commissioner Josephat Lombe, council secretary Yaphet Sinkamba and other district heads of departments said the government was committed to ensuring that the road project was completed on time.

He also appealed to the contractor to ensure that a good job was done, adding that both the government and members of the public expected a good product from the contractor.

Col Chanda further said he was happy that the contractor with a total of 120 workers was meeting the required minimum wage.

He was however, disappointed that it was taking long for RDA to engage a contractor to work on the bridge across Luangwa River.

"We need a bridge across Luangwa River. In fact, we should have started with a bridge so that as the road construction works progresses, motorists should have been using this route to go to Chinsali and from Chinsali to Chama, "said Col. Chanda.

But Michael Banda, resident engineer for East Consult, the consultant for the lot 2 of the Chama-Matumbo Road project, said plans to engage a contractor to erect a bridge across Luangwa River, had advanced.
Banda said the contractor would soon be moving on-site to commence the works and was set to finish the project in record time and hand it over to the government.

He said that a lot of works had been done from the time the rains stopped in the area adding that very little works were done during the rainy season.

Meanwhile, Chama district in Muchinga Province has procured two sets of earth-moving machines at a cost of KR10,000 using the Constituency Development Fund (CDF).

Lombe disclosed this yesterday when Col Chanda paid a courtsey call on him at his office.

Lombe said a part payment of KR7,540 had been paid, adding that the balance of KR2,460 would be paid once the machinery arrives in the district.

He said the equipment had already been loaded on the ship from the United Kingdom and was expected to arrive in the district by the end of this month.

Lombe said the machinery which would be used for the construction of feeder roads in the district would be shared between the two constituencies- Chama North and Chama South.

He said another set of earth-moving machines would be procured using the 2013/2014 CDF funds for the two constituencies as soon as the last payment is paid.

Lombe said that most of the feeder roads in the district, particularly in Chama North Constituency, were in bad state and the procurement of the earth-moving machines would go a long way in making most roads passable and ease the transportation of farm inputs and farm produce.

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