‘Treasury slowing down Mbudzi project’

Labour force working at one of the bridges at the multi-million dollar Mbudzi interchange yesterday. Pic Shepherd Tozvireva

THE Transport ministry has accused Treasury of slowing down progress in the construction of the Mbudzi interchange roads and bridges by taking long to compensate property owners affected by the road expansion project.

The project is expected to ease congestion at the intersection along the busy Harare-Beitbridge Highway.

Addressing the media during a ministerial tour of the construction site yesterday, Transport ministry secretary Theodius Chiyanga said only US$12 million has been availed out of US$34 million required to compensate the displaced property owners.

“Out of US$34 million that we should pay out as compensation, finance has only paid US$12 million, which is a total of 19 properties. In total, progress stands at 35%, 36% for bridges and civil work stands at 20%,” Chiyanga said.

“The main challenges are that we could not give the contractor uncovered site because we had not compensated the affected property owners. We had previously promised that we will first compensate them.”

He added: “We have given ourselves the next two months in agreement with the treasury that we would have paid off everyone who is affected by the project. And then from that time we will ask the contractor to consider and consolidate the programme of the whole project. By mid-June we will be able to know when we are going to complete the project.”

Related Topics