The Ministry of Works and Transport continues to advance rural road accessibility with its inauguration on Monday of two upgraded rural roads in the Omusati Region.
A 98-km stretch of gravel road from Amwaanda-Omutambo gwomawe, as well a 16-km stretch of tarred road from Oshikuku-Onamutuku, were officially inaugurated by Minister of Works and Transport Alpheus !Naruseb.
The two roads cost N$192 million and are an addition to the Wakashamane and Omafo-Outapi roads that were also inaugurated earlier this year.
Speaking at the first inauguration at Amwaanda, !Naruseb said the Amwaanda-Omutambo gwomawe road is an accomplishment in its quest to become a leading contributor to Namibia’s socio-economic development and growth through the provision of world-class road infrastructure and services.
He said the objective of the recent road development is to improve rural accessibility, reduce road user costs and reduce travel time between the two villages and to enhance road safety.
In addition, the road will provide improved access to essential services, such as the hospitals and schools.
“Our government has made it a priority to ensure that Namibians from all walks of life are afforded a dignified life, irrespective of their locations,” said !Naruseb.
At the second inauguration ceremony at Elim, the works minister said sound road transport infrastructure is central to the attainment of national policy objectives that contribute to poverty eradication.
The Oshikuku-Onamutuku road that was upgraded to bitumen standard has an average traffic volume of 385 cars per day.
!Naruseb urged citizens at large to jealously safeguard the country’s road infrastructure and to report vandalism to Roads Authority offices countrywide.
“Road accessories, such as studs and road signs, which are meant to enhance the safety of pedestrians and motorists are being removed and vandalised. We cannot be a progressive and prosperous nation when we build and others destroy,” he said.
The minister further appealed to all motorists to be vigilant and to observe road traffic signs at all times when travelling.
“I would like to implore all law enforcement agencies and all road users, to work together in enforcing safety and combating unruly behaviour on our road,” said the minister.
The two projects created employment opportunities for 218 unskilled workers in the local community, including women.
Governor of Omusati Region Erginus Endjala said while the whole region is successfully connected to road network infrastructure there is still a need to connect Tsandi-Onesi-Epalela and Omugulugwombashe-Etilyasa-Amarika.
According to the governor, people in those areas have been cut off from basic services since 1990, because of the deplorable state of the roads in the region.
“It is high time to pay attention to those roads,” he said, noting that the affected communities sometimes have to traverse 60 to 70 km of inhospitable terrain to access basic services.