Home » Governance » Legal Dispute Stalls Work On Major Highway

The expansion of the Harare-Beitbridge Highway has once again been stalled following a legal dispute involving a contractor, the Senate heard yesterday.

Transport and Infrastructural Development Minister Dr Obert Mpofu said legal battles with a local contractor caused the delay of the commencement of work.

Minister Mpofu said this during the question and answer session in the Upper House.

Matabeleland South Senator Tambudzani Mohadi (Zanu-PF), had asked when the expansion of the Beitbridge-Harare and the Harare-Chirundu Roads would begin.

“There are legal issues that we are resolving. Once those are dealt with, we will start work on that road. There are some local companies that feel they should have been appointed to do the job. I am sure that the issue will be resolved,” said Minister Mpofu.

Sen Mohadi said the road had become a death trap for travellers and the road carnage was caused by the road’s poor state.

“People are dying and it has become a death trap,” she said.

Minister Mpofu said several regional countries were equally eager to have the road constructed given its importance.

“It is not only Zimbabwe that wants the road done. There is South Africa, Zambia, Botswana and the DRC. It’s a major highway,” he said.

Responding to another question, Minister Mpofu said his ministry had allocated funds to several local authorities.

“People now call me Minister of Potholes. I don’t like these potholes. If I had my way, I would have filled them overnight while you are sleeping,” he said.

Legislators had complained about the poor state of roads in their constituencies.

On Air Zimbabwe, Minister Mpofu said the airline had acquired two large aircraft that were expected to service new routes like Angola, DRC and Kenya.

He said Air Zimbabwe’s aircraft could not service certain international routes owing to noise and other technical impediments related to their old age.

Harare Senator James Makore (MDC-T), had asked when Air Zimbabwe would service international routes.

Higher and Tertiary Education, Science and Technology Development Deputy Minister Dr Godfrey Gandawa, meanwhile, defended the use of social media by tertiary institutions like teachers’ colleges in communicating with prospective student teachers.

He said while social media like WhatsApp text messages might not be conventional, it was the most effective and efficient method to relay information such as inviting them for interviews.

Mashonaland Central Senator Damien Mumvuri (Zanu-PF) had complained that some students in remote areas had no access to those platforms.

Source : The Herald