By JOHN SAKALA
Central Province Minister Sydney Mushanga says the social and economic benefits attached to the construction of the Lusaka-Ndola dual carriageway are immense.
And Economist Yusuf Dodia says the construction and expansion of roads is always beneficial to the people.
In an interview yesterday, Mr Mushanga said he looks forward to the quick completion of the Lusaka-Ndola duo carriageway for the province to start enjoying its benefits.
Tthe minister catalogued the benefits he expected from the road which is under construction to bring to the people of Central province to enjoy once it is completed.
“From the time President Edgar Lungu launched the construction of the road in a breaking ceremony, we began to see the benefits through the employment of young people and these benefits will continue right to the time the road will be completed,” he said.
Mushanga observed that his Central Province was an agricultural, industrial and mining province and was centrally located and therefore the Lusaka-Ndola duo carriageway will link it to the rest of the country and make business easy.
The minister said the Lusaka-Ndola duo carriageway will also be an economic road that will link the province to COMESA and SADC.
“I also want to take this opportunity to thank President Lungu for his bold leadership although some quarters have been politicking, the construction of this road will reduce road carnage. A lot of people have lost their lives on this road and it is our belief as the people of Central province that road accidents will be reduced once the road is completed.
“We as the people of Central Province can’t wait for the for the road to be completed so that we can start seeing it’s benefits, my word of people to the people working on is to accelerate the works,” he said.
And Luanshya Mayor Nathan Chanda says the Lusaka-Ndola dual carriageway will add value to the people of his town.
Chanda said it was a pity that the opposition had resorted to branding the construction of the road corrupt to deter government from delivering on its promises.
In an interview, the Luanshya mayor noted that the 45km bypass from the road will open the town to the business community and in turn boost the local economy.
“It will add value to our town, in terms of accessibility, business and jobs for the youths,” he said.
“That by-pass road from Lusaka to the Copperbelt will enable our farmers have access to the market and of course the business community will have access meaning the cost of farming will go down.”
“So we want this road like yesterday,” he said.
The mayor also hoped the construction of the road will reduce the number of fatal road accidents that have been recorded in the past.
He said because of the development that was taking place in the country, the opposition and government critics had run of issues to talk about and resorted to branding everything as corrupt.
Mr Chanda said if the people who were saying the contract to conatruct the Lusaka-Ndola dual carriageway were genuine about the corruption claims, they would have reported to the anti-corrption commission.
“The issue of corruption is a political gimmick that the opposition and government critics want to use to deter us from delivering the promises that we made to the people,” he said.
“Let them report the corruption to ACC. They just want to throw some element of despondency in the minds of the people before 2021.Every opposition is now just talking about corruption.”
Meanwhile Economist Yusuf Dodia says construction or expansion of roads is always beneficial to the people.
“Immediately you tar or expand the road automatically the value of the properties on that road go up, and so the Lusaka-Ndola carriageway will make the properties on the Great North Road up in value, he said.
“However you look at it, people will benefit from the economic benefits that will come with road.