Shamiso Dzingire, Business Reporter
DIVERSIFIED financial services group ZB Financial Holdings has mobilised over $60 million towards the Emergency Road and Rehabilitation Fund after it was retained to raise a further $150 million for the project.
ZB chief executive officer Mr Ron Mutandagayi revealed this in a report accompanying the group’s reviewed financial results for the half year ended 30 June 2018, which were released on Friday.
In the report, he said the move follows the successful mobilisation of a similar $105 million for road rehabilitation last year.
“Following the successful mobilisation of $105 million under the Emergency Road Rehabilitation Fund (“ERRF”) for the Zimbabwe National Roads Authority (Zinara) in 2017, the Group has been retained to raise a further $150 million,” said Mr Mutandagayi.
At the beginning of the year, Transport and Infrastructural Development Minister Dr Joram Gumbo unveiled over $230 million to be disbursed to provinces in phases for road rehabilitation.
Early this year, the Parliamentary Portfolio on Local Government, Public Works and National Housing revealed that 60 percent of Zinara funds were used in the hiring of equipment at the expense of road repairs.
Consequently, local authorities said the money disbursed to them was not enough to service the roads.
A report released by the Committee on Local Government in June this year further indicated that local authorities are of the view that Zinara should disburse allocated funds once at the beginning of the year to enable them to pay contractors on time.
However, Zinara ruled out this possibility saying they were unable to disburse funds in bulk as they receive funds throughout the year from what they collect from tollgates, vehicle licensing and other sources.
Zinara collects around $130 million annually from road access fees, vehicle licensing fees, transit fees and fuel levy, among other revenue streams.
However, the resources are often inadequate to cover the roads fund agency’s obligations. — @ShamisoDzingire