Zinara disburses ZiG93,9  million to road authorities Bulawayo City Council workers work on a section of George Silundika Street in the city yesterday

Peter Matika, [email protected]

THE Zimbabwe National Road Administration (Zinara) has disbursed ZiG93,9 million to road authorities to finance the implementation of critical road infrastructure maintenance and development projects across the country.

In line with the capacitation pillar of its strategic agenda, Zinara has also disbursed 38 percent of fuel to local authorities who will continue to draw down on this resource over the course of the year.

Good roads are a critical economic enabler as they ensure transport and logistics efficiencies, which are part of the key cost drivers for most businesses. 

The rolling out of road infrastructure projects is at the heart of the Government’s development agenda given the impact of such projects on job creation and downstream impact across value chains.

To enhance transparency and accountability in the usage of these funds, the author would later this year conduct a “Road Condition Survey,” a critical administration action to audit road conditions in Zimbabwe and provide vital planning and implementation information, as the Government intensifies the road rehabilitation programme.

The roads agency has also been engaging and capacitating road authorities to equip them with the requisite skills to manage their projects better.

In a statement yesterday, Zinara said the ZiG93,9 million was disbursed during the first quarter ended 31 March, a period in which it also operationalised the 2024 strategic agenda, which was successfully set and signed off in December 2023.

“A total of ZWL235 billion (ZiG 93 952 017,31) was disbursed in the first quarter of 2024. The larger proportion of the disbursement constituted funding for routine road maintenance projects,” reads the statement.

“This financing is disbursed to road authorities in advance of implementing their projects and the amount is processed based on the submitted acquittal of the previously issued routine maintenance funds.”

According to the detailed disbursement schedule, the Department of Roads received an allocation of ZWL87,6 billion from a total budget allocation of ZWL151,6 billion. The District Development Fund (DDF), which is now Rural Infrastructure Development Agency (Rida) was allocated ZWL103,6 billion and received ZWL3,5 billion in the first quarter.

Among local authorities, Harare was allocated a huge portion of ZW$40 billion and has received ZW$8,8 billion while Bulawayo received ZW$2,8 billion from a total annual allocation of ZW$12,1 billion.

Matabeleland North province received ZW$3,8 billion from an initial allocation of ZW$17,5 billion while Matabeleland South province got ZW$2,2 billion in the first quarter from an annual allocation of ZW$16,9 billion.

While road authorities have repeatedly said the funds they receive are not enough to meet their needs, Zinara insists that a quality assurance sign-off for projects undertaken is a prerequisite accompanying the funds’ acquittals with the other portion of the disbursed amount channelled towards the settling of payments for periodic projects completed at the tail end of 2023.


“These are processed against the submission of Interim Payment Certificates (IPCs). In some instances, no disbursements are recorded in the first quarter as a number of road authorities began the year implementing routine maintenance works with funds issued in the last quarter of 2023,” said the agency.

“As such, project completion and acquittals would not have been completed within the first quarter. Meanwhile, in line with the capacitation pillar on our strategic agenda, Zinara secured two million litres of fuel to support Road Authorities with their respective projects.”

It said the fuel support facility was meant to address a critical pain point for road authorities around the procurement of the commodity, which is currently sourced in forex.

“This move will go a long way to improve the speed and quality of implementation of their various projects. Furthermore, it preserves the value for resources disbursed to Road Authorities,” said Zinara.

“In the first quarter, 38 percent of this fuel was issued and road authorities will continue to draw down on this resource over the course of the year. The monitoring and evaluation system, which we already have in place for monetary disbursements is also applied here.”

Zinara said the move from ZWL to ZiG was effected at the end of the quarter and expressed confidence that this will give stability to disbursements and enable road authorities to implement their projects fully.

According to Zinara, the framework of the strategic agenda is premised on four pillars of integrity, capacitation, engagement and automation (ICEA).

“Our critical priorities for the year are categorised in these pillars and we are confident that delivering on these commitments will secure the overall achievement of our mandate,” it said.

The national roads agency said it began the year with the launch of several major road infrastructure programmes, which include the works on the Harare-Chirundu highway, as well as rehabilitation works on roads leading to the Parliament of Zimbabwe in preparation for the Sadc Heads of State Summit.

Other projects that were initiated nationwide include the Mashava-Mandamabwe Road project, as well as the relocation of the Dema tollgate.

“Meanwhile, a number of projects were concluded and roads opened to traffic and these include the first stretch of Domboshava road and the road in the Heroes’ Acre among others. 

“Various other projects are being undertaken at road authority level and much traction has already been made,” said Zinara.

In addition to the road works, the agency said it has gone a step further to engage and capacitate road authorities to equip them with the requisite skills to manage their projects.

“Three regional workshops were conducted covering all the provinces in the country. The workshops covered training on procurement management, standard acquittals, programme preparation, contract management, audit issues, standard costing, routine maintenance and use of CIS as a road asset management tool,” it said. 

“The workshops also included field visits where road maintenance works were demonstrated.”

To further enhance transparency, Zinara has pledged to continue updating stakeholders on disbursements and projects undertaken.

“In fulfilment of its mandate, Zinara continues to explore ways to create value-preserving disbursement models, which will help to improve the effectiveness of road maintenance programmes undertaken by the respective road authorities,” it said. 

“To this end, work is underway to further improve our revenue collection system, starting with relocation and upgrade of tolling infrastructure.

“Furthermore, Zinara is supporting the department of roads with the resuscitation of road maintenance units across the country. These units will serve to provide first-line road maintenance services in various localities, which will significantly accelerate road dilapidation and go a long way in ensuring the maintenance of good quality roads.”

Meanwhile, Zinara has appealed for stakeholders’ partnership in the road infrastructure maintenance agenda through improved compliance with the motor vehicle fees payment.

If all do their part, the current backlog of road works will be accelerated and cleared in the medium term and our country will epitomise a great transport system,” said Zinara.  



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