Kambwili takes RDA, LWSC, Zesco to task

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THE Government has taken public service providers to task for delaying completion of works at the National Heroes Stadium in Lusaka, which is supposed to be handed over to the Government on October 15.

Sports Minister Chishimba Kambwili expressed worry at the continued loss of public funds due to what he says is poor work culture and attitude by workers at the public utility companies and organisations who fail to finish works on time.
Speaking when he met representatives from Zesco, Lusaka Water and Sewerage Company (LWSC) and the Road Development Agency (RDA) at his office yesterday, Kambwili said public funds were going to waste due to delayed works.
Kambwili regretted that the National Heroes Stadium will be opened without having proper roads, with inadequate electricity and it was still not known whether water would be running and the sewer pipes would have been connected by then.
“I am very disappointed with the way these three companies have handled the works at the stadium because that project has been running for over 24 months and the contractor is through with the works yet our own people are still very far from finishing.
“The contractor told us when we visited the site on Thursday last week that there is only enough electricity for lighting; we saw that the roads have not yet been done and the place still has no connection to the sewer line,” he said.
He wondered what good such a facility would offer even if it were handed over on the set date, because it has not been serviced by the main utility providers.
He said it would have been better if LWSC, Zesco and RDA had finished the works at the same time as the contactor, adding that the fact that they had not done so meant keeping the contractor on site until such a time when the others had finished their work.
“Can you imagine how much that is going to cost the Government? A lot of public funds will go to waste,” Kambwili said.
He has since urged the respective organisations and ministries who will be working with the contractors on the Mongu and Livingstone stadia to ensure that the same does not happen at the two stadia.
And Zesco senior engineer, Mathews Mkandawire said his company had already engaged a contractor to do the work at the stadium and expects the works to be completed in six months.
RDA senior manager design, Elias Mwape said the contract for the road works had already been signed and the contractor was on site.
He explained that it would take about 12 months to complete the works and that it would be done in three phases which were the construction of inner roads, the construction of the car park and the expansion of the Great North Road measuring 3.8 kilometres.
Mwape said what had delayed the works were inadequate funds, explaining that the RDA had written to the Ministry of Finance for more allocations which has since been approved and the contractor has moved on the site.
Meanwhile, LWSC said it would be through with its works by Tuesday next week saying the delay was because the Lusaka City Council (LCC) had taken long to approve its works which involved cutting of the road to lay the pipes which has since been decided and assured that works will start this weekend.