Joseph Madzimure Senior Reporter
The Zimbabwe National Road Administration (ZINARA) has disbursed $143,3 million for maintenance countrywide for the first and second quarter.
Beneficiaries of the funds are the Department of Roads in the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development, District Development Fund, urban and rural district councils.
Some of the roadworks were affected by the Covid-19 lockdown and most authorities have not exhausted disbursements of the first quarter.
ZINARA public relations manager Mr Tendai Mugabe confirmed the development on Tuesday.
The amount disbursed is part of the $512 million that was set aside for this year.
Asked if there were any plans to review the disbursement budgets, Mr Mugabe said: “Yes, we are cognisant of price volatility on the market and it is our desire to review disbursement budgets to road authorities, but that is subject to review of our road user fees tariffs by the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructural Development.
“We have made our submissions to the ministry and once they have been approved we will come up with a supplementary budget for disbursements.”
According to ZINARA’s initial budget, the 60 rural district councils are supposed to get $117 760 000, urban councils $158 719 999, the Department of Roads $143 360 000 and DDF $92 159 999.
The quarterly funds covers routine maintenance, but the road administrator also provides funds for periodic maintenance and other emergency maintenance works as and when the need arises.
Out of the total amount budgeted, Zinara disburse a quarter of the total budget in advance for routine maintenance, which involves grass cutting, de-silting of drains, pothole patching, among others.
He said that road authorities have to acquit those funds to get the next disbursement.
Mr Mugabe said ZINARA was committed to the development of a world class road network in line with Vision 2030 enunciated by President Mnangagwa that seeks to create an upper middle income economy.
He said ZINARA now had a new executive and management keen to drive the national vision for national prosperity.
ZINARA can also release funds in case of emergencies such as natural disaster as was the case with the Cyclone Idai that hit some parts of Manicaland last year, where several roads and bridges were washed away.