The Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) has come gun blazing on Road Authority (RA) for reporting lies to the public that they have finalized certain roads yet nothing has happened on ground.
Through its corruption whistle-blower initiative, HRDC has since written the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) to commence investigations.
In its letter to ACB Director Reyneck Matemba, dated 8th September 2020 and signed by chairperson Gift Trapence, HRDC says they noted a centre spread advert in The Nation daily newspaper of Tuesday, 8th September 2020 by the Roads Authority stating that all grading contracts were completed.
The grading contract in question refers to construction of new roads to bitumen standard and grading of roads in the Southern Region.
It is alleged that the grading was for 621Km amounting to MK244, 098, 851.46 and was for a period of 90 days ending on 20th June 2020.
However, contrary to what RA advertised in the press, HRDC’s did a preliminary inquiry to verify these assertions by talking to Chiefs in Chikwawa and Nsanje and found that some of the roads were not done.
Some of the not yet done roads include: Bangula to Mwabvi Game Reserve, Lundu to Chididi, Marka to Lurwe roads in Nsanje; and Lengwe Turn/off to Dzikolatha, Chikwawa to Kapichira roads in Chikwawa.
Trapence told Nyasa Times: “The Chiefs were emphatic that no work was done. The advert from the Roads Authority is puzzling and insult to the taxpayers of this country. We question why Roads Authority should be spending money on falsehood.”
He added that these contracts were awarded between March and April 2020, it is thus surprising that the Roads Authority is making reference to a decision of the Secretary to the President and Cabinet in the new administration.
“The timelines do not add up and does make any sense. We appeal to ACB to commence the investigations into these contracts across the country as soon as possible and that the ACB update the nation when the investigations have started,” he said.
There was no immediate comment from ACB and RA.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :