By Staff reporter
The construction of the Macheke Road by the Murehwa Rural District Council has impacted the livelihood of local communities as it has impacted Agriculture and the general wellbeing of locals.
The road which is 500 metres from the Murehwa Centre turnoff leading to Macheke is being dualised cutting through locals’ farm fields and at some instances leaving a gap as little as 5 meters between the road and houses.
This is posing dangers to the locals as they have to bear with the huge quantities of dust and the possibility of accidents once the road opens.
“We have to oblige as we can not do anything despite the looming challenges we are likely to see in terms of the safety of our children as the road is in our backyard and already the dust is making us prone to tuberculosis,” an affected resident who declined to be named said.
The road construction work which commenced in April came as a surprise to the locals as they were only told of the project a week before commencement.
“We were only notified of the construction work a week before commencement and had no means to initiate the necessary relocations in such a short space of time,” she said.
Losses have in turn been experienced as loss of the years farming produce, and continues as the loss of farming land for generations to come.
“We lost some of our 2018-2019 farming season produce to the construction work as we had not finished harvesting in April and have lost our source of livelihoods, our pieces of land. We do not know we’re to start but just hope we will be given farm land” the source said.
The road which meanders through the village joins another road which local businessman and politician Joseph Makamba Busha of FreeZim Congress feels should have been extended and not compromised the residents.
“Common-sense seems to urge for the extension of the road as compared to the adopted strategy which has only negatively impacted the livelihoods of these rural folks who are dependent on agriculture, not possessing the pieces of land is detrimental to their well-being and continues exposure of our Government’s uncaring nature,” the resident also said.
The residents have been staying in the area for over five years and have already built permanent structures in the area.
“We have been staying here for more than five years after being offered the pieces of land from our local headman who is responsible for allocation of land,” another resident said.
Efforts to get a comment from the District Administrator were fruitless as officials at the local governance Office insisted that the responsible officials we’re busy.