THE National Roads Fund Agency (NRFA) has commissioned two toll gates at Manyumbi in Kapiri Mposhi and Kafulafuta between Kapiri Mposhi and Ndola, which are expected to rake in K800 million into the national treasury this year.
The collection of toll fees at the two sites started yesterday under the agency’s phase two of the National Road Tolling Programme (NRTP).
Small vehicles are paying K10, mini buses K15, light trucks between K25 and K40, heavy-duty trucks K60 and K80, and those carrying abnormal loads are paying K160 and K250.
NRFA public relations manager Alphonsius Hamachila said all vehicles passing through the two sites will be required to pay toll fees, except for vehicles of the Republican President, Vice-President, security and emergency vehicles.
“We have commenced tolling at two selected points, at Manyumbi which is 25km from Kabwe, and Kafulafuta between Kapiri Mposhi and Ndola,” Mr Hamachila told journalists.
Mr Hamachila said as Zambia has embarked on the Link Zambia 8000, Pave Zambia 2000 and C-400 (Copperbelt) road projects aimed at opening up the country and improving the road network, more funds are needed for road maintenance.
He said phase one of the tolling project involved the levying of heavy-duty vehicles at the point of entry and weighbridges. About K300 million was raised in 2012, and between 2013 and 2015, K800 million was collected.
“We will roll out the tolling at eight sites, but ultimately, we are looking at 26 sites,” Mr Hamachila said.
And Central Province permanent secretary Edwidge Mutale said the province deserves to have one of the first tolling sites because it is centrally located and has high volume of traffic.
“As a province, we are very happy over the operationalisation of Manyumbi toll gate,” Ms Mutale said this when an NRFA team paid a courtesy call on her in Kabwe.
Earlier, NRFA director programme and evaluation, Wallace Mumba, said the agency is happy with the positive response from motorists following the opening of the toll sites.
“This is a very important project for National Roads Fund Agency as a road sector, and also as a country. As you are aware, Government has embarked on ambitious projects like the Link Zambia 8000, Pave Zambia 2000 and the Copperbelt c-400… these roads require to be maintained and consistently repaired,” Mr Mumba said.
He said the toll booths being used at the two sites are temporary because the mega toll plazas which are under construction, will be opened by March this year.
Pictures By Eddie Mwanaleza/Statehouse 15-01-2016.
Times of Zambia