GWERU: The Government of Zimbabwe has terminated contracts for six local contractors who have failed to deliver under the Emergency Road Rehabilitation Programme in the Midlands province.
The details emerged as the Parliamentary Portfolio Committee on Transport and Infrastructural Development visited the province to monitor on the progress of projects on paper.
During a project tour in Lower Gweru, Midlands Roads Engineer, Deniss Mapfumira highlighted that the companies whose contracts have been terminated include those who had agreements for the dualisation of the Boterekwa road and the Lower Gweru Road which connects Gweru to Crossroads Centre.
Of the contractors, some also stand accused of failing to submit basic paperwork such as road designs which require Government approval.
It also emerged that in the worst scenario, one of the contractors completely failed to meet contractual agreements despite the government setting aside USD1.2 million dollars towards the projects.
“We are in the process of terminating his contract. He has completely failed to deliver and it’s now a cost to the government. We are in the process of retendering the project where we are going to do proper scrutiny of our contractors.
“We are still trying to make some calculations on how much he used so that we pay him for the services rendered.
We have now set aside ZWD400 million dollars for the project. We hope very soon a new contractor will be on-site to do the works required,” said Mapfumira said.
The government has been involved in major road rehabilitation projects following President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s declaration that roads in the country are a national disaster.
Welcome by motorists, villagers have however lamented displacement in the road’s rehabilitation process.
To curb existing challenges, the government however says it is in the process of putting in place a policy where companies who fail to meet their contractual agreements will be blacklisted and face penalties for costs incurred.
Meanwhile, Government through the Central Mechanical Equipment Department (CMED) has taken over the Rehabilitation of the Kwekwe /Amaveni road after the city fathers at Kwekwe city council have neglected the stretch in a move that had proved costly to Kwekwe residents.
Locals have said the project was a campaign move ahead of the just ended by-elections.
To the government, the project is nonetheless a pure developmental project with 1,2km of the 5km stretch having been already covered.
“I am happy with the progress the guys on the ground are making. As you can see for yourself, this road is taking good shape. We want to make sure that we will be done before the rainy season. We also have other projects that we are targeting to ensure that we spur investment in this city,” said CMED Regional Engineer; Determination Ndoro.