Minister castigates staff shunning field work

Chitalu Chilufya
Chitalu Chilufya

PATRIOTIC Front Mansa Central Member of Parliament Chitalu Chilufya has accused some civil servants in his constituency of shunning field work in preference to operating from the comfort of their offices.
Dr Chilufya said the failure to go out in the field by officers at district and provincial levels negatively affected the equitable distribution of resources as money ended up being channeled to projects that did not urgently need it.
Dr Chilufya made the observation after leading engineers from the Road Development Agency (RDA) and Rural Roads Unit (RRU) at the weekend to inspect two gravel roads in Mansa Central which have not yet surveyed.

The Matenda-Mashingashi and Mwang’uni-Tayali roads were earmarked for upgrading early this year but no work has been done on site yet and Dr Chilufya is worried people from other parts of Mansa will again be cut off in the rainy season thereby stifling development.
“This is of serious concern that whenever we allocate resources to certain provinces, we find that they will place the money just in the Central Business District, but they forget the outskirts because they have never been there, they work from offices,” he said.
He said equitable distribution of resources would only be guaranteed if officers at district and provincial levels were conversant with their operational areas which could be enhanced if they engaged other stakeholders such as traditional leaders.

“So provincial and district officers, know your areas. Don’t work from offices. We need people to get out there and understand their areas, map your area, know where the people live and know where the needs are so that as resources pour in, you must know exactly where you must place a road, a school, a clinic, where we need human resource,” he said.
Dr Chilufya, who is  Health deputy minister, said the Matenda-Mashingashi road was of economic importance as it led to a school apart from being used in the transportation of goods and services hence the need to have it urgently worked on.

The Mwang’uni-Tayali road was equally important and thus it also needed to be worked on urgently because it linked about seven villages with a population in excess of 10,000 people.
People from the villages fail to cross the Kasamba stream which runs across Mwang’uni-Tayali road after heavy rain hence Dr Chilufya’s appeal to the Roads Department at provincial and district levels to erect a permanent bridge and reasonable road.
RDA regional manager Gustone Meleki said the Matenda-Mashingashi and Mwang’uni-Tayali roads would undergo a conditional survey today which will determine the type of intervention needed for the two projects.


Times of Zambia