Contractor in Muzi Chirwa’s ward abandons 700m street

Contractor in Muzi Chirwa's ward abandons 700m street
ABANDONED: A road construction project that caused a furore in the Gert Sibande mayor Muzi Chirwa's ward has now been abandoned by the contractor. PICTURE BY 013NEWS/ZK.

Official sources say the municipality wants to dump the contractor and get another one but the contractor also says he’s fed up with them.

A contractor appointed to construct a 700 meter street at what was said to be a R5 million project in ANC regional leader Muzi Chirwa’s ward of Badplaas has left the project like that, citing the difficulty in working with the officials at the local municipality.

The abandoning of the project has left some community members believing that corruption was behind the halt but officials say the contractor is to blame.

The project would have been one of the first road projects in the underdeveloped ward 17 of Badplaas in the Chief Albert Luthuli municipality since the ANC took power in 1994 and was going to go a long way in restoring the lost trust that the ANC endures in the ANC chairman’s ward.

The tender was given to Dumisani Nkwanyana to come pave a 700m street beginning of August 2018. But beginning of October 2018 workers disappeared on site.

At the time Nkwanyana said he had been disrupted by the water “on the surface” but was going to return on site and complete the work before 2 December 2018.

SEE ALSO: Cry for road divides residents in Muzi Chirwa’s ward

This week Nkwanyana said the municipality and the consultancy have been giving him a hard time.

He said he experienced damages of R1.5 million on the site while earthworking the street and “when I claimed to the municipality they are not willing to co-operate”.

“It seems to me the project was meant for somebody else and I got it by mistake. I did write a report to the municipality about the damage [such as water pipes] that occurred on the street and other challenges we were facing but they don’t seem to want to co-operate. The project was basically funded from my pocket and I decided to leave,” Nkwanyana said.

He is trading through a company called Lefiso Projects. He was supposed to finish the 700 meter road on 2 December 2018 and was thereafter going to wait for funds from the local municipality in Carolina to continue paving other streets, at apparently R31 million.

When the project began last year it prompted a violent protest, with residents demanding that government prioritises a 4km main road than the 700 meter street.

The main road in Badplaas that residents wanted government to prioritise and which Lefiso Projects owner Dumisani Nkwanyana was gonna pave after paving the 700 meter street

But now that Nkwanyana has failed the first test and officials at the municipality are considering dumping him and appointing another one who will deliver the project fast ahead of the May 2019 elections, or at least be visible on site while politicians campaign for votes.

Ward councillor Mandla Motaung said they are “on the process of replacing the contractor”.

He said Nkwanyana has already been paid. “He claimed his money equal to what he said he did on site, which was less than a R1 million or something but as municipality we are not happy with the work. We believe he didn’t have the proper resources to undertake such a project. That’s why we are on the process of replacing him because we want the project to continue,” Motaung said.

(edited by ZK)

Send tip-offs to