OTAMANZI, 01 June – Deputy Minister of Works and Transport, James Sankwasa on Thursday officially inaugurated the Epato-Onaushe gravel road in the Omusati Region’s Otamanzi Constituency.
Sankwasa said the completion of the gravel road is cause for celebration as it provides easy access to transportation and will contribute to development in the region.
The road was constructed over 24 months at a cost of N.dollars 63.9 million, with the cost co-financed by the government and German government-owned Kreditanstalt fur Wiederaufbau (KfW).
“The new road will now provide much-needed access for and to our people in the settlements of Epato, Otamanzi and Onaushe,” Sankwasa said, adding that people living along the road will no longer have to navigate narrow, self-made track roads and cross dangerous water-filled swamps.
The deputy minister said the 36.6 kilometre Epato-Otamanzi-Onaushe District Road was constructed with labour-based methods.
“The use of labour-based construction methods was preferred as it leaves substantial revenue within the community and contribute towards alleviating the problem of unemployment in the community,” he said.
Sankwasa further said agriculture, which is the main economic activity in the area, will benefit from increased trade and access to external markets, thus promoting the development of alternative economic activities and improved livelihoods. Also speaking at the inauguration was Omusati Governor Erginus Endjala, who bemoaned the fact that the contractor left borrow pits unlevelled in the area.
Endjala said the contract agreement requires the levelling of borrow pits from where sand for construction was extracted, upon completion of a project.
A total of 1 567 local people were employed during the construction of the road and a total of N.dollars 6.1 million was spent on their salaries.