Gender Policy Development Workshop draws to a close

Today, Umzingwane Rural District Council (URDC) Gender Policy Development Workshop came to a conclusion, with development of road networks recording as one of the least performing social services.

The sentiment was raised during a strategic review at the training that was facilitated by Women’s Institute for Leadership Development (WILD) in partnership with URDC, during the formulation of a district Gender Policy.

The District is incapable of periodically rehabilitating its road networks as there is one grader that is in operation. The only grader that should repair the entire District’s roads is prone to wear and tear, which the delegates alluded as being the order of the day.

“The province relies on a grader that is susceptible to damage as it is used across all the seven districts,” commented Thokozani Gama, the URDC Engineer. “We cannot grade our roads because priority is given to the main road, leaving other areas unattended to.”

The inability to grade roads in Umzingwane is a challenge that does not affect the Council in isolation but the District Development Fund (DDF) and the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development.

“Since 2016, trafficability of the road network in Umzingwane District has deteriorated from an average of 64, 7 % to 32, 6% in the year 2018,” stated Umzingwane Ward 13 Councillor Jabulani Makhola as he was presenting results that emerged in a review of the Strategic Plan.

Gama added that grading roads was a temporary measure that is repeated every year, unlike trying out tarred roads which can last a longer period.

The poor performance of Umzingwane’s roadworks was also attributed to Zimbabwe National Road Administration (Zinara) alleged delay in responding to reports of a breakdown in machinery.

“Whenever we reported a breakdown of the grader, Zinara would take long to administer repairs,” said Umzingwane Ward 20 Councilor Nqabeni Nkala. “This has improved since we now rely on DDF to do the repairs for us.”

A proposal of availing a second grader was made as a solution that will improve road works in Umzingwane in order to attain 80% trafficability by 2020 as stated in the district’s strategic plan.

The sentiment was raised during a strategic review at the training that was facilitated by Women’s Institute for Leadership Development (WILD) in partnership with URDC, during the formulation of a district Gender Policy.

The District is incapable of periodically rehabilitating its road networks as there is one grader that is in operation. The only grader that should repair the entire District’s roads is prone to wear and tear, which the delegates alluded as being the order of the day.

“The province relies on a grader that is susceptible to damage as it is used across all the seven districts,” commented Thokozani Gama, the URDC Engineer. “We cannot grade our roads because priority is given to the main road, leaving other areas unattended to.”

The inability to grade roads in Umzingwane is a challenge that does not affect the Council in isolation but the District Development Fund (DDF) and the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development.

“Since 2016, trafficability of the road network in Umzingwane District has deteriorated from an average of 64, 7 % to 32, 6% in the year 2018,” stated Umzingwane Ward 13 Councillor Jabulani Makhola as he was presenting results that emerged in a review of the Strategic Plan.

Source: Women’s Institute for Leadership Development