Chilonga Bridge construction fails to take off as inflation wipes budget


MASVINGO – The long awaited construction of Chilonga Bridge in Chiredzi South has failed to take off again after the US$20 million allocated in the national budget in 2018 was wiped out by inflation.

Masvingo Provincial Roads Engineer Peter Mukome confirmed this in an interview with The Mirror.
Chilonga Bridge is across Runde River at Chilonga about 30km south of Chiredzi town.

Government sourced $14m for the bridge in 2018 and $3m was released to the Ministry of Transport for the start of the construction of the 200m long bridge.
The total cost is put at US$20m.

The money for the construction of the bridge was released when the local currency was at 1:1 with the US$. The spiraling inflation has left the project with money just enough for survey work, said Engineer Mukome.
“The money released for the project was severely affected by inflation. The money is now enough for surveys and not construction” said Mukome.
The MP for Chiredzi South Rt Brigadier Gen Kallisto Gwanetsa said construction of Chilonga Bridge is critical not only to Chiredzi South but to the country as it is the shortest route linking Zimbabwe to Beira.
He said many lives have been lost along the river as people try to cross it in times of floods.

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