Okalongo constituency will witness the commencement of the construction of about 24 gravel roads leading to schools and clinics early next month. Okalongo constituency councillor Laurentius Iipinge described the construction of roads in Okalongo as a blessing for the constituency, which at present does not have any gravel roads. He said currently the contractors are busy with sand sampling to determine which sand will be suitable in the construction of the gravel roads. “Once that is done, the construction of the roads will commence,” said Iipinge. The constituency will thus only be left with putting up roads at Oneheke and Ombwana.
According to Iipinge, the roads will ease the burden of the community to access services when the area is flooded.
Iipinge said the constituency is prone to floods during the rainy season, thus restricting movement when it rains.
“School children as well as teachers are usually trapped at home, forcing schools to temporarily close down while the water levels subside. Equally, the sick also have a hard time getting to hospitals because even the ambulances cannot get to the clinics,” lamented Iipinge. In addition, the councillor said, the construction of the roads will create employment for the local community and consequently empower them economically. Apart from the roads construction, the constituency office has also prioritised the digging of earth dams to conserve water in the constituency.
According to the councillor the constituency has a lot of flowing water during the rainy season which is left to waste because there is no storage.
Iipinge said there is a need to conserve water for both humans and livestock, because the constituency is currently experiencing a shortage of water.
He said many of the community members have now resorted to paying for water at communal taps, however the exercise is heavily inflated and has led to some taps being closed due to non-payment.
In addition, the constituency councillor said once water is stored it can also be used by the community to put up gardens to sustain themselves.