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RDA EMBARKS ON CONSTRUCTION OF CLIMATE RESILIENT ROADS IN THE KAFUE RIVER BASIN

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L – Uncompleted box culvert across the Nanzhila stream on Dundumwezi – Ngoma Road. R - Existing culverts in fair condition on the same Road.

Government through The Road Development Agency (RDA) has embarked on construction of roads that are climate resilient in response to the global climate change under the Strategic Programme for Climate Resilience. According to the July, 2016 Inception Report for the Improvement to Climate Resilient Standards of Selected Strategic Roads in the Kafue River Basin in Southern Province the Agency intends to construct a total of 251.25 kilometers of the road network at a total cost of US$17.5 million funded by the African Development Bank (ADB).

Zambia is one of three countries in Africa, together with Mozambique and Niger, initially selected to implement the Pilot Programe for Climate Reslience (PPCR). The selected roads to be implemented under this programme are the 75.25 kilometers Kalomo to Dundumwezi, the 124 kilometers Itezhi Tezhi to Dundumwezi, and the 52 kilometer Namwala to Itezhi-Tezhi road.

The Project is scheduled to commence later this year as soon as the procurement process in concluded and contracts awarded for the design, review, supervision and for works.

“Zambia has developed a  Strategic Programme for Climate Resilience whose main objective is to provide engineering assessments, socio-economic studies, conceptual designs and Environmental and Social Impact Assessments necessary to upgrade and maintain the targeted roads to climate resilient standards and to also upgrade the selected roads in the Kafue River Basin to climate resilient standards,” the Report stated.

The roads have been designed and will be constructed with specific consideration of  climate trends and climate hazards including floods, droughts and increased heat and with careful involvement of national and local authorities. Furthermore, the improvement of selected roads to climate resilient standards will use the principles of performance based contracts (OPRCs) in which the  contractor will be required to carry out full rehabilitation works for a period of twenty four (24) months and thereafter maintain the roads for a period of thirty six (36) months.

The Government of the Republic of Zambia has also secured support through grant funding amounting to €4 million from the Nordic Development Fund (NDF) to finance an update and revisions to transport sector infrastructure standards and codes so as to ensure that they reflect best practices in climate resilient infrastructure development.

“This support is under the umbrella of the Pilot Program for Climate Resilience (PPCR) which is coordinated at a national level by the Interim Climate Change Secretariat (ICCS) under the Zambia Ministry of Finance. The PPCR is one of the global climate funds established under the multi-donor Climate Investment Fund (CIF) which aims to help countries shift toward a more climate resilient development path, consistent with poverty reduction and sustainable development goals.

The program seeks to complement available adaptation financing by providing funds for programmatic approaches to integrate climate resilience into core development policies, plans and projects, thus catalysing a transformational shift from “business as usual”, sector-by-sector and project-by-project, towards a more programmatic way of building climate resilience.

In Zambia, the PPCR is an integral part of the National Climate Resilience and Low Emissions Development Programme, which is led by the ICCS with representation from key sectoral ministries.  As such, the PPCR entails four (4) projects, which together constitute the Strategic Program for Climate Resilience (SPCR) which aims at mainstreaming climate change into the most economically vulnerable sectors of the economy.

These projects are the AfDB-funded project to pilot climate resilience activities in the Kafue sub-basin; the IBRD-funded project to strengthen the national framework for climate change in Zambia and pilot complementary climate resilience activities in the Barotse sub-basin; the  IFC-funded project to provide private sector support to the two sub-basins, particularly in the areas of index-weather insurance, climate information, micro-credit, and private-sector led climate resilient financing; and the NDF-funded project to support development of standards and codes for climate resilient transport infrastructure.

L - A section of 75.2 kilometres Kalomo-Dundumwezi Road in poor state with potholes and rutting earmarked for construction under the Strategic Programme for Climatic Resilience. R – An undermined and currently inaccessible Bridge at Kalomo River.

GOVERNMENT SIGNS FIRST EVER ROAD CONCESSION AGREEMENT

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•	RDA Director and Chief Executive Officer, Eng. Kanyuka Mumba (second from left) speaking at the Signing Ceremony as GED Chairman and CEO, Mr. Rene Hutton-Mills look on. On the far left is Finance Minister Hon. Alexander Chikwanda with Works and Supply Minister, Hon. Yamfwa Mukanga (far right) witnessing the event.

 

Government through the Road Development Agency (RDA) has signed the first Concession Agreement under the Public Private Partnerships (PPP) with Groupe European de Development (GED) Project Africa (Z) Limited to construct the 85 kilometer Kaluba to Mwenda Road in Luapula Province at an estimated cost of US$ 180million.
RDA Director and Chief Executive Officer, Eng. Kanyuka Mumba said the signing of the Concession Agreement was a milestone because the project was not only the first PPP Road Project in both the Democratic Republic of Congo and Zambia but was also the first cross border infrastructure Project between the two Southern African Development Community (SADC) countries. He said the main objective of the 85 kilometer Project was to provide a shorter and more efficient route for traffic between Lubumbashi, through Nakonde, and the Port of Dar-es-Salam in Tanzania adding that the development would help reduce travel time, vehicle operating cost and ultimately lower the cost of doing business.
“The upgrading and mordernisation of this important regional corridor will foster great economic integration in the SADC Region. The new road will not only provide a shorter and faster link between Katanga and the Port of Dar-es-Salam, but will also enhance productive capacity and development in Luapula Province and all surrounding areas. Needless to say, the development of this route will also ease the congestion at Kasumbalesa border with the DRC,” he said.
And Mr. Hutton- Mills said the five year journey to signing of the concession had been bumpy, a journey dotted with highs and several lows but with the dogged determination and unbending will of the great team assembled alongside the GED, the magnificent support and admirable patience of the ACGT and the Ministry of Infrastructure in the DRC, RDA and Ministry of Works and Supply in Zambia, he had no doubt that all the collective effort was not in vain. He thanked the two Heads of State of Zambia and DRC for their support   throughout the process.
He said a privately financed cross-border PPP project, presented certain challenges such as different processes, technical and regulatory standards on both sides adding that this would therefore require a strong bilateral and multilateral cross-border support and co-operation from both Governments and from the regional bodies such as COMESA and SADC.
“We humbly ask for your continued support and patience as we look forward to bring this project to financial close in the shortest conceivable time,” he said.
Speaking at the same function, Finance Minister, Alexander Chikwanda said the Zambian Government through his ministry had for a long time propagated the need for sustainable financing for the Road sector and one viable option was the use of deep but unutilised resources that the private sector had. He said the signing ceremony should therefore mark the start of the engagement of the Private Sector in Public Projects so that infrastructure could, on a sustainable manner, not only be supportive of national and regional development through enhanced linkages but compliments the need to ensure the fiscal position was sustainable going forward.
Minister of Works and Supply, Hon. Yamfwa Mukanga, assured GED of maximum support from the Zambian Government adding that Government was expecting a good and high quality end product that would make the two countries realise their objectives.
The scope of work includes but not limited to: modernisation and upgrading to bituminous standard for the road starting from Kaluba at the Luapula river to Mwenda in Luapula Province covering 85 kilometers; construction of a 345 meters Cable-Stayed Bridge across  Luapula river; construction of One-stop Border facilities; and construction and maintenance of four integrated schools and Health Centers (or other social Infrastructure as agreed with concerned communities) in the vicinity of the Project.

MUFUCHANI BRIDGE OFFICIALLY COMMISSIONED

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President Lungu cutting the ribbon to signify the handover of Mufuchani Bridge (r)

Republican President, Mr. Edgar Lungu has officially handed over the newly constructed  Mufuchani Bridge to the people of Kitwe following the successful completion of the project by the Road Development Agency (RDA).


And President Lungu has thanked the World Bank for the financing the construction of the 160 meter long bridge at a cost of K63 million. Speaking in Kitwe during the handover ceremony, President Lungu said he was pleased that Government had continued to deliver projects that had been promised to the people of Zambia which aimed at improving their livelihood.


The President said the absence of a permanent crossing at Mufuchani had not only been a hindrance to the growth and development of Kitwe, but it also posed serious social problems for the people in the area. He said for many years, people had relied on a pontoon to cross the crocodile infested Kafue River. When the Pontoon was non-functional, people were forced to use dug-out canoes.


“Your Government could not allow the problems associated with lack of a permanent crossing to continue. I am exceedingly glad that the new Mufuchani Bridge is a living monument and testimony of Government’s commitment to improving people’s standards through provision of  infrastructure”, he said.


And in thanking the World Bank for their continued support to infrastructure development in Zambia, President Lungu said the Zambian Government and its people would forever be grateful to the World Bank, which had been a committed development co-operating partner for many years.


And spelling out the benefits of the new bridge, Mr. Lungu said the construction of the bridge would eliminate dangers associated with lack of a permanent crossing and facilitate the expansion of Kitwe City on the Eastern side. He noted that private developers had already started to invest in housing projects which would benefit a lot of citizens in Kitwe and those from other towns.


He also disclosed that the road from Mufuchani bridge which was an existing earth road would be upgraded to bituminous standard in view of the envisaged developments in the area. The  48 kilometer road runs from Mufuchani Bridge to the Kitwe-Mufulira Road and from Mufuchani Bridge to the Ndola-Kitwe dual carriageway near ZAMTAN. The development of these roads would provide a bypass for travelers from Ndola to Mufulira without passing through Kitwe town. 
Mr. Lungu cautioned people to guard against vandalism of the bridge. The President said he was saddened to learn that some unscrupulous people had already started vandalizing bolts and nuts as well as electricity cables that were providing lighting to the bridge.


“This development has forced the RDA and the contractor to spend additional funds to replace the vandalised cables as well as to weld the guard rails and nuts to reinforce the bridge and prevent vandals from causing further damage to this expensive infrastructure”, he said.


The President said such acts needed to be condemned in the strongest terms because they amounted to sabotage. He added that not only were the vandals reversing Government’s efforts to improve infrastructure, they were also negating development and endangering the lives of road users by compromising safety features that had been provided on the bridge.


He appealed to the residents of Kitwe to report anyone vandalizing the bridge to the nearest police Station and instructed the Copperbelt Provincial Administration to Construct a Police Post in the area.


And Minister of Works and Supply, Hon. Yamfwa Mukanga, expressed happiness that another important project had been completed. In a speech read for him by the Justice Minister Ngosa Sibyakula, Hon. Mukanga said that the bridge would improve the livelihood of the people of Mufuchani.


Speaking earlier, Copperbelt Minister Mwenya Musenge, said the construction of the bridge demonstrated Government’s commitment to improving people’s living standards and improving infrastructure development.

Side view of the new  Mufuchani Bridge

RDA RECEIVES AWARD FOR EFFECTIVE IMPLEMENTATION OF ROAD PROJECTS

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RDA CEO Eng. Kanyuka Mumba third from right after receiving the award on behalf of RDA.

 

The Road Development Agency has received an award from the Road Builders of Africa (ARB) an initiative from Cote d’ivore that seeks to promote road construction and transport systems in Africa.

The ARB is an undertaking of Acturoutes an Agency in Cote d’ivoire with similar aims and objectives as the Road Development Agency in Zambia.  The inaugural awards ceremony was held on the sidelines of the Africa Development Bank (AFDB) Conference at Hotel Intercontinental in Lusaka on May 25, 2016.

At the same ceremony, the ARB also awarded His Excellency President Edgar Lungu the supreme Prize in “recognition of his leadership, personal support to the huge road projects in Zambia to connect the ten provinces of the country including the Link Zambia 8000, the Pave Zambia 2000 aimed at paving 2,000 km of roads in the municipalities and the L400 project aimed at rehabilitating 400 km of roads in Lusaka, the capital and for efforts to promote more profitable tourism in Zambia”.
The citation for the President’s award and the RDA was read out by Mr. Barthelemy Kouame, Director General of the Africa Road Builders.  RDA as an implementing Agency was recognised for successfully implementing major road and Bridge Projects on behalf of the Zambian Government. The recognition is based on the major road programmes that Government is implementing such as the Link Zambia 8000, Pave Zambia 2000 and L400 Road projects among others.
Other leaders awarded at the ceremony include:  His Majesty King Mohammed VI of Morocco, His Excellency Mr. Alassane Ouattara President of the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire, H.E. Mr. Hailemariam Desalegn  of Ethiopia and  H.E. Mr. Ali Bongo Ondimba of Gabon. All the leaders were recognised for their contribution in the development of road and rail infrastructure in their respective countries.

And receiving the Awards on behalf of the President and RDA, Chief Executive Officer Engineer Kanyuka Mumba said the RDA was delighted to receive the award. He said the recognition was an affirmation of the work that the Agency was carrying out on behalf of Government.

He said the recognition had given the Agency impetus to push the road development Agenda forward.

The selection of deserving countries and Governments was done by a jury of renowned personalities in Africa. Acturoutes and ARB have the desire to contribute to the promotion of modern roads and efficient transports for the development of Africa.

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