BUJUMBURA March 24th (ABP) – The Ministry of Infrastructure, Equipment and Social Housing, Ir. Déogratias Nsanganiyumwami, hosted a press briefing on Tuesday March 22, 2022, where he announced that some 200,000 young members of village cooperatives will benefit from employment in routine manual road maintenance.
According to Mr. Nsanganiyumwami, a routine manual road maintenance strategy has just been put in place and will be applied by the Burundi Roads Authority (ARB), which will involve village development cooperatives.
He said that this government strategy is part of its “zero potholes” program.
The Minister in charge of infrastructure pointed out that the works which are planned to be carried out by the cooperatives are, among others, the cleaning of gutters, culverts and nozzles. He added clearing on the entire road right-of-way and enforcement, plugging of gullies on the roadway and removal of landslides, as well as reporting of damage caused to road infrastructure by road network users.
He also indicated that the communal administration will be responsible for identifying the most efficient village cooperatives for the execution of those works and to support those cooperatives during the execution of those works.
Mr. Nsanganiyumwami noted that all the contracts will soon be signed between the ARB, the administration and the representatives of the designated cooperatives. He added that on Monday, March 28 all the cooperatives that have signed the contracts will be at work every working day, from Monday to Friday.
He also pointed out that a deadline of 2 weeks has been set for the said cooperatives to complete the work. A team of experts will be put in place to check whether the works will be well executed. He said that this is the 1st phase of that strategy which will be followed by a 2nd phase of asphalting.
The ARB will have the task of providing those cooperatives with appropriate equipment and supervising them in the execution of the work. An envelope of about 1,000,000,000 BIF is devoted to the 1st phase, said Mr. Nsanganiyumwami. The estimated maintenance cost is 100,000 BIF per month and per well-maintained kilometer, which will be collected by the cooperatives. He indicated that during the 1st phase, the maintenance will extend over 909 km and 9 National Roads (RN) will be concerned. Those roads have been targeted due to their role in regional integration, i.e., their economic, strategic, security, tourism or trade facilitation nature, he explained.
The national roads in question are the RN1 and RN2 linking the two capitals (economic and political); the RN7 linking the city of Bujumbura and the southern provinces. The RN12 linking Burundi and Tanzania from Gitega (Gitega, Karusi, Muyinga, Kobero) and the RN6 linking Burundi to Tanzania via the RN1 North corridor will be concerned. The other roads concerned are the RN5 linking the city of Bujumbura to the province of Cibitoke; the RN9 linking the economic capital to the province of Bubanza and the RN8 linking Gitega to the southern provinces.