ARTHUR MWANSA, Lusaka
EASTERN Province Minister Makebi Zulu says people are thrilled with the development projects Government is undertaking in the area.
And Chipata Central nember of Parliament (MP) Moses Mawere says the patching of potholes on the Chipata-Lundazi road will reduce the time people have to travel to markets and health facilities.
Mr Zulu is confident that the current infrastructure development in the province will bring about economic transformation that will see the creation of job opportunities for local people, especially the youth.
Mr Zulu, who is also Malambo MP, said this yesterday in an interview.
â€œAs you might be aware, Eastern Province is agro-based, for example, Lundazi produces a lot of agricultural products such as beans, rice and maize, which need to be transported to the nearest market.
â€œThis is why we are pleased that Government, through the National Road Fund Agency (NRFA), has released about K403,000 for road maintenance in the province,â€ Mr Zulu said.
Recently, the Road Development Agency (RDA) indicated that the money is being used to patch potholes on the Chipata-Lundazi road.
Mr Zulu is optimistic that once patching of potholes is completed, farmers will have smooth passage of their produce to markets.
â€œAs a committed government, we are living up to our promises to work on infrastructure, we are concentrating on economic roads that will bring about a lot of return to enable us work on other roads,â€ he said.
Mr Zulu said it is gratifying that the province is moving from agricultural production to agro-processing which needs a good road network to enable farmers transport finished products to markets.
â€œWe are looking forward to a time when we will be transporting finished produce into Lusaka,â€ Mr Zulu said.
He also said working together with the Ministry of National Development Planning, the provincial administration is looking at ways of measuring the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) for the province.
Mr Zulu said the provincial GDP is only attainable if there is a good road network.
â€œOver and above the roads, we are also working on bridges and culverts. As you may be aware, Government is spending a lot of money during the rainy season to alleviate the suffering of people who are cut off from the rest of the country due to washed away bridges and culverts,â€ he said.
And Mr Mawere, who is Minister of Youth, Sport and Child Development, said he is happy that the patching of potholes on the Chipata-Lundazi road will enhance socioeconomic development in the province.
ARTHUR MWANSA, Lusaka