There are growing fears over poor workmanship on two key roads namely Nsanje-Marka and Nsanama-Nayuchi in Machinga following the awarding of the contract to a Chinese contractor who is synonymous to substandard or shoddy work.
The Chinese Construction Company, China Railway 20 Group, recently commenced the construction of the Nsanama-Nayuchi Road to a tune of K5.3 billion for a 10 kilometer stretch.
Concurrently, the company is also constructing a 36-kilometer Nsanje-Marka Road which has a total project cost of K12 billion.
However, the company has recently come under heavy criticism for constructing a substandard road in Nsanje district.
The shoddy road was exposed following flash floods which destroyed few-months old multi-billion kwacha Nsanje-Marka Road.
Roads Authority spokesperson, Portia Kajanga said the whole part of the road has been destroyed by the flash floods triggered by Cyclone Ana.
Writing on his Facebook page in direct reference to the substandard work by the Chinese company, renowned social and political commentator Macbain Mkandawire said: “The rains in Malawi cannot be bribed, they will inspect every road and bridge much better than any mandated institution.”
According to Mkandawire, the rains in Malawi do not need the anti-corruption Bureau (ACB) to investigate corruption and fraud.
Mkandawire also prayed for the rains to continue doing the audit and inspection of substandard projects in the country.
“The rains do not need ACB to get evidence but provide much needed leads for ACB to investigate,” Mkandawire, who is also Executive Director for Youth Net and Counseling (YONECO).
On his part, a Malawian youthful entrepreneur Sylvester Chabuka wrote: “I like that, nobody can cheat God.”
Another Malawian social media user, Edson Sabola said: “I am not an engineer but looking at the pictures, one can tell that this road is substandard, Kuba too much on government projects.”
Social media influencer Idriss Ali Nassah said: “Our own engineers, architects, project managers, road inspectors connive with corrupt constructors to build roads that Gospel Kazako would, simply, call Chingamu.”
“……And because there are no consequences for any of them, it’s going to happen again and again, Until Jesus come”
Specifically commenting on the Nsanama-Nayuchi road in Machinga, Paramount Chief Kawinga commended government for showing interest to construct the road.
The chief said the road will boost trade in the area as most people grow cash crops.
Machinga East legislator Ester Jolobala (United Democratic Front-UDF) was recently quoted as saying that it was ironic that a railway line to Nacala Port in Mozambique passes through the area, but the road that runs parallel to it remains in bad state.