R1bn cash injection for roads revamp

Eastern Cape Premier Phumulo Masualle has set aside R1-billion to revamp access roads to the province’s municipalities.

The financial injection will also be used to electrify areas which still do not have power and for the de-silting of dams and the drilling of additional boreholes for drought-hit areas.

Masualle made the announcement while presenting his state of the province address.

The announcement comes while areas such as Amathole District Municipality, parts of Nelson Mandela Bay Metro and Buffalo City have experienced water cuts due to shortages.

“We are aware of the continuing drought which is affecting parts of the Amathole, Chris Hani and Joe Gqabi districts. Working with the Department of Water Affairs and Sanitation, mitigation plans have been put in place and we are continuing to monitor the situation,” Masualle said.

He said that, to ensure the province’s rural communities were accessible, the government had created partnerships for alternative technology in roads construction and road maintenance.

“We also speak to stimulating agriculture through agroprocessing. We are targeting the participation of our youth in agriculture in such endeavours.”

An additional R107-million has been set aside to buy machinery “for maintenance of the provincial roads located in municipalities”.

“We will continue with the maintenance of surfaced roads through a programme of resealing,” he said.

Masualle said the government “is moving ahead with plans for the development of the N2 Wild Coast route from East London to Mthamvuna River”.

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