Road Network in a Shambles after Floods

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By Catherine Sasman

OSHAKATI

The road network in the north has been severely damaged by the northern floods and it is estimated that it would cost in the region of N$70 million to N$80 million to restore the network.

Regional engineer with the Roads Authority office at Oshakati, Juma Iddi, said most of the roads on the national network had cut offs caused by running surface water from Angola.

He said the northern area had never received this kind of rain or floodwaters from Angola, since the 1950s when most of the existing roads were built.

“Many of these roads were constructed after the floods experienced in the 1950s and may need some improvement,” Iddi said.

Most affected was the Omafa-Okalongo-Outapi road that runs parallel with the Angolan border. The damage to this road has also affected access to the Engela Hospital. Also impassable is the Omato-Okalongo road.

The Roads Authority has been able to restore the Oshakati-Okatana-Endala network that had been cut off in several places.

The Oshakati-Omugwelume road that was also cut off is now passable, while the Oshakati-Ompundja road has not yet been restored.

The “very important” Sandi-Ongulumbashe road is still cut off.

An additional N$100 million to N$150 million, said Iddi, would be required to build sufficient bridges.

The culverts, which are smaller crossing structures, said Iddi, would have to be replaced with proper bridges.

The Roads Authority is using a number of contractors to restore the network and Iddi said the authority is trying to get small and medium enterprises involved in the reconstruction of the nor-thern road network.

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