Econet Wireless and the Zimbabwe National Road Administration (Zinara) have entered into a partnership which will enable EcoCash users to pay tollgate fees using the platform.
The new system will be available at 20 tollgates across Zimbabwe before being rolled out country wide.
Econet Wireless Zimbabwe chief executive officer Douglas Mboweni said the service would help travelling motorists to experience the convenience of using EcoCash while providing Zinara with a safe, secure and convenient revenue collection method.
“The state of the art value proposition is not the ordinary Pay Merchant, but a specific solution unique to Zinara, which allows users to link a mobile phone wallet with a registered vehicle for auto-detection and instant access at the tollgate,” she said.
“The auto detection of the pre-loaded toll wallet at toll gate offers complete disruption to the manual payment method of cash and cards, saving motorists queuing time with a payment experience of under 10 seconds granting express toll access to motorists.”
Currently tollgate fees are pegged at $2 for light vehicles and $3 for minibuses whilst buses, heavy vehicles and haulage trucks pay $4, $5 and $10 respectively.
Government has struck a $100 million deal with banks to rehabilitate the country’s damaged roads, Transport minister Jorum Gumbo has said.
This comes as rampaging floods, which injured 128 people and displaced at least 1 985, washed away several bridges and roads in major highways in southern parts of Zimbabwe.
The funds — mobilised with the assistance of Zinara and the Treasury — are set to be channelled to urban and rural district councils, and other road departments.
Gumbo said in the meantime, government has been conducting emergency works on the country’s roads. He said Manicaland Province’s Stapleford and Honde Valley roads’ washed away sections have been fixed and are now open to traffic.
On-going projects include Chikwizi Bridge repairs along Mutare-Masvingo road, which is now 65 percent complete. Repair works at Murare Bridge along Mutare-Masvingo road is now at 80 percent complete.
THE Zimbabwe National Roads Administration (Zinara) will start paying contractors once they have completed their jobs after it emerged a majority were doing shoddy work.
In an interview, Zinara’s technical director Engineer Moses Juma said Zinara was concerned with poor works done by contractors which has seen it changing its strategy.
“There was a variation in the rates where in the past we used to pay for the time the equipment is spent on a project but we are going change that to pay on output based road construction whereby we pay for work done. What it means is that if a contractor does sloppy work, we will not pay. We will ask them to make it good at their own cost. We have now changed the strategy of implementing road works,” said Eng Juma.
He said most of the roads that are being rehabilitated were not satisfying motorists who are the biggest stakeholder in the transport sector.
The Zimbabwe National Road Administration has released $1,7 million in emergency road funds to Harare City Council for the rehabilitation of the city’s roads, which were recently declared a state of disaster. Harare is expecting at least $15 million for its 2017 allocation considering the state of the city’s roads.
According to the recent minutes of the Environmental Management Committee, councillors noted that Zinara had disbursed $1,7 million in 2016 and council was owed road and maintenance grants by Zinara dating back to 2015, which the road authority had promised to pay.
Last year, Zinara announced that it had allocated $1,2 million for road maintenance, but it is still to release the funds. “The committee further noted that the funds were inadequate for the repair or maintenance of the 7 000km of roads, drains, public lighting, traffic signals and other street furniture,” read the minutes.
FORTY percent of the 800 000 registered vehicle owners in the country are not paying for Zimbabwe National Roads Administration (Zinara) licences, a development which is affecting road rehabilitation programmes.
In an interview at Zinara’s Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF) stand yesterday, the road authourity’s director of operations, Mr Precious Murove, urged motorists to pay their licences to help fund road maintenance works.
“In the country, according to our database, we have about 800 000 vehicles and 60 percent of that figure are compliant with the law and 40 percent are non-compliant. This is a strategy to ensure that the motoring public are in compliance with the law,” said Mr Murove.
“The issue is to do with compliance, the revenue base that we collect as Zinara is not adequate to make sure that we complete maintenance and rehabilitation of our road infrastructure. More money is needed to be channelled for road rehabilitation and road maintenance.”
He said for the duration of the ZITF, which ends tomorrow, motorists would be exempted from paying Zinara penalties as a way of encouraging them to be up to date.
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