Minister to kick off road upgrade drive

2011-04-14 22:20

Johannesburg - Transport Minister Sibusiso Ndebele will launch a nation-wide drive called S’hamba Sonke (moving together) to upgrade and maintain roads next week in Durban, the department said on Thursday.

Department spokesperson Sam Monareng said the programme would be launched on Monday April 18 at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre (Durban ICC) at 09:30 for 10:00.

"The S’hamba Sonke programme will see the department of transport launching a new roads upgrade and maintenance initiative to fix and upgrade the entire secondary roads network of South Africa," he said.

Monareng said in a statement the programme would create new opportunities for emerging contractors and jobs across the country. The nation-wide drive would focus on the maintenance of the secondary road infrastructure using labour intensive methods of construction and maintenance, which would cost R6.4bn between 2011/2012.

Monareng said the transport department set aside R7.5bn in 2012/2013 and R8.2bn for 2013/2014, which would amount to a total of R22.3bn in the medium term.

As a target in relation to the routine maintenance of roads and infrastructure in line with the Zibambele initiative approximately 70 000 jobs would be created during the 2011/2012 financial year.

"Zibambele, which means 'doing it ourselves', is a form of routine road maintenance using labour-intensive methods in which a family or household is contracted through a provincial department to maintain a specific length of road on a part-time basis.

The national roll-out of the Zibambele initiative will form part of S’hamba Sonke."

S’hamba Sonke would include a massive potholes patching programme that would become national following the launch, and a national potholes hotline would also be started to report potholes country-wide.

Roads engineers and superintendents would also be deployed across roads network with the responsibility to address potholes and infrastructure maintenance.

"In partnership with all provinces, the S’hamba Sonke programme will improve access to schools, clinics and other social and economic opportunities by drastically upgrading the secondary roads network and fixing and repairing potholes throughout the country."

Read more on:    sibusiso ndebele  |  transport

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