Decongesting Independence Avenue in Solwezi a pipe dream

Chingola - Solwezi Road
Chingola - Solwezi Road

Plans to open up another road to decongest the narrow Independence Avenue in Solwezi Township have remained on the drawing board for several months due to unfulfilled pledges by an investor.

In an interview with ZANIS, Solwezi Municipal Council Mayor, Andrew Kalangwa, revealed that despite the government opening up Mukuba road in Mushitala area, Kansanshi Mine has not built a bridge on the Solwezi River as per agreement.

Mr Kalangwa said some months ago, the provincial administration came to an agreement that they open up another road from Mushitala to Kimiteto as an alternative route to decongest Independence Avenue in the central business centre.

He stated that Kansanshi Mine in turn pledged to build a bridge on the Solwezi River north of Solwezi and by-pass roads but nothing was forth coming.

Mr Kalangwa stressed that Independence Avenue was too congested with traffic, adding that motorists with small cars feel uncomfortable and inconvenienced moving on the narrow road and by-passing heavy duty trucks ferrying copper.

When contacted for a comment, Kansanshi Mining PLC Public Relations Manager, Geoffrey Musiska, confirmed that the provincial administration did approach the mine and that they promised to look at the proposal in consultation with engineers but no agreement was signed.

Mr Msiska said the action plan on the costing, tender procedures and other processes were being studied by civil engineers, stressing that no promise was made until consultations were exhausted.