KZN MEC for Transport states billions allocated to fixing province’s roads

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On Thursday, 5 May 2022KZN MEC for Transport, Community Safety and Liaison Neliswa Nkonyeni delivered her budget policy speech during the legislature sitting in Pietermaritzburg.

MEC Nkonyeni highlighted that her department would be focusing on transport infrastructure and district services. This, she said, was because several of the most heavily trafficked roads have passed their design lifespan, while some heavily trafficked roads are not designed to accommodate freight.

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“This has increasingly manifested itself through road failure, more potholes, higher accident rates, increased vehicle operating costs, longer journey times, higher transaction and logistic costs, reduced productivity, reduced global competitiveness and high levels of public discontent.”

However, despite these challenges, the MEC stressed that the department remains committed to delivering services.

“In this financial year, we plan to upgrade 183 kilometres of surfaced road, build new 50 kilometres of gravel road, and construct 10 vehicle bridges and two pedestrian bridges. In addition, we will rehabilitate and maintain 1 800 000 square metres of the current existing infrastructure. Some of these commitments will need to be re-prioritised based on the Provincial needs post the April 2022 floods. A realigned budget will be captured within the next month to suit the provincial needs,” she noted.

This is in addition to the already existing 8 668 kilometres of the paved provincial road network and 25 404 kilometres of gravel road network throughout the province.

The MEC further explained that to improve the pace of delivery, the department has a Memorandum of Agreement (MoU) with the Independent Development Trust (IDT) to utilise their contracts. This agreement includes five projects valued at R615 million.

Moreover, the Department has allocated more than 72% of its budget to this initiative. According to the MEC, R8.9 billion has been allocated to this programme.

“The biggest allocation is going to the maintenance of existing infrastructure, which is allocated R4.2 billion and the construction of new projects allocated R3.8 billion. The remaining budget will go to programme support (R741 million), infrastructure planning (R36 million), and infrastructure design (R49 million).”

She further elaborated that the Department is going to be delivering all these projects guided by the infrastructure Master Plan, which is currently being finalised. This master plan will guide the provincial priorities and will outline strategic routes and priorities per district municipality in the province.

Infrastructure Budget Breakdown per District Municipality

DistrictNew InfrastructureProjects for RehabilitationUpgrades
eThekwiniR18 millionR178 millionR121 million
UguR10 millionR260 millionR139,9 million
uMgungundlovuR62 millionR266 millionR246 million
uThukelaR21 millionR132 millionR143 million
uMzinyathiR55 millionR297 millionR132 million
AmajubaR24 millionR16 millionR42 million
ZululandR85 millionR146 millionR161 million
uMkhanyakudeR19 millionR133 millionR31 million
ILembeR44 millionR52 millionR75 million
King CetshwayoR27 millionR213 millionR152 million
Harry GwalaR46 millionR292 millionR170 million

With millions of rands now being earmarked for KwaZulu-Natal’s roads, what are your thoughts? 

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