A road contractor, who allegedly abandoned work on the Oshikuku-Elim road for almost five months, has infuriated Oshikuku Councillor Modestus Amutse, who is demanding that higher authorities intervene and bring the contractor to book.
Onamagongwa Trading was awarded a N$60 million tender for the construction of the Oshikuku-Elim road, but apparently left gaping potholes on the stretch of road that was supposed to be completed before it is formally handed over to government.
Amutse said contractors, such as Onamagongwa Trading, need to be dealt with accordingly, as they are failing government by delaying and deserting government projects with impunity. “It is very annoying and frustrating to see heaps of sand on the road every day, but there is no movement of workers on the road,” said Amutse. He said there are rumours circulating that Onamagongwa Trading abandoned the Oshikuku-Elim road for bigger projects, which he said is somewhat shocking, considering that the firm failed to deliver on a fairly small project, but has now ironically been awarded an even bigger tender.
Amutse maintained that such important work should be given to serious companies and those who fail to deliver according to the terms of agreement should be held accountable and punished.
“I was told that these people were last seen in January and they cut both their water and electricity bills. Under normal circumstances a person will only cut their bills when they are done with the work,” he angrily observed.
Onamagongwa Trading, under the leadership of Martin Ipinge, was awarded a tender to complete the Elim-Oshikuku road and to connect Onamutuku-Oshikuku road to the main road. Both projects were due to be completed by August 2015, but heaps of sand still lie where they were dumped on the road, obstructing the smooth flow of traffic from Oshikuku, while the road to the hospital is also blocked. Attempts to obtain comment from Ipinge proved futile.
Oshikuku-Elim road is just one of the latest examples of shoddy and tardy workmanship that has seen projects worth hundreds of millions of Namibia dollars being abandoned, at great cost to the State.
Such roads include Onandjaba-Okalongo road in Omusati and the 35 km Okatana-Onhuno road that was to be constructed at the cost of N$187 million. Less than a year after its completion the Oshakati-Omungwelume road, which was fully covered with bitumen surface, had to have its surface scraped due to shoddy workmanship. Its reconstruction eventually cost government N$229 million.