Skhumbuzo Macozoma

MAKING people’s lives better is at the core of what we do. We foster relationships, we enable economic activity. We connect regions and countries. This is the very embodiment of our slogan, Building South Africa through better roads. This slogan is a true reflection of the work we do in the North West.

This province plays an important role in the economy of the country. It is the platinum belt of South Africa and a major contributor to the nation’s agricultural output.

Our network traverses the whole of the North West, from Sannieshof to Rustenburg, from Ramatlabama Kokosi in Fochville.

SANRAL’s network in the province has increased almost threefold and now stands at 2 598km. At the heart of all we do is the implementation of our strategic task to carry out the government’s targeted programmes to better the lives of all citizens, create safer roads for all and to work in co-operative partnership with road users, transport providers, relevant authorities and the private sector.

These objectives have seen us successfully deliver on road construction – notably the N4, through a public-private-partnership with the Bakwena Platinum Concessionaire, and the R24. These projects have improved road safety, economic development and the regional link to Botswana.

Our routine road maintenance projects will go a long way toward adding to the safety of all road users, especially our community development project on the N12 around Klerksdorp, which entails the construction of sidewalks, concrete kerbing, the improvement of four existing intersections, fencing off a section of the road and drainage works. The project is on track to be completed by December 2017. A total of six SMMEs in the project feeder zone have been appointed and are on site.

The recently promulgated Preferential Procurement Policy Framework Act (PPFA) directs state-owned entities such as SANRAL to ring-fence a minimum of 30% of each tender for the subcontracting of SMMEs. It is an opportunity to grow black-owned companies and afford them an opportunity to improve their Construction Industry Development Board (CIDB) grades. In addition, SANRAL will soon have its new transformation policy to further advance black business participation in SANRAL projects.

We still have a long way to go, but we will keep building these relationships and rollout programmes so that we can continue to build a better South Africa for all.

Enjoy our inaugural Hello North West.

Skhumbuzo Macozoma is SANRAL’s CEO

Supra Obakeng Ramoeletsi Mahumapelo

THE provincial government is in the process of implementing the National Development Plan through the rebranding, repositioning and renewal of the province, which is anchored in five pillars:
1. ACT (Agriculture, Culture and Tourism)
2. VTSD (Villages, Townships and Small Dorpies)
3. RHR (Reconciliation, Healing and Renewal)
4. Setsokotsane (a targeted, multi-disciplinary out- reach programme aimed at curbing the triple chal- lenges of poverty, unemployment and inequality)
5. Saamwerk, saamtrek (work together, pull togeth- er) is the guiding principle for my term in office where I’ve pledged to uphold the Constitution and work with opposition parties represented in the legislature, committees of the legislature and communities.

The backlog in provincial road infrastructure constitutes one of the key challenges in our efforts to improve service delivery.

As a responsive government, we are conscious of the concerns our people are raising about the state of our roads, especially with regard to safety. We have a responsibility to restore dignity to the communities that were victims of colonialism’s selective development programmes.

The districts making up the Bokone Bophirima (North West) province have a total road network length of 19 786km. Of this, about 74% (14 661km) is made up of unpaved roads in various states. This must be addressed and it is an opportunity for SANRAL to partner with the province.

The agency’s presence here has already made an impact on infrastructure development and it

currently manages around 13% of our provincial roads, or 2 598km.

We heartily welcome SANRAL’s ring-fenced projects, which are at various stages of being rolled out. The province-wide signage project is a critical road safety initiative and the configuration of the network adds to its urgency. Large sections of this network of unpaved roads traverse rural areas, with animal crossings and children travelling to school. This makes the addition of visible, state-of-the-art road markings a welcome improvement.

The R24 upgrade is a major development in the region. This road links the west of Gauteng with Rustenburg, the fastest-growing municipality in the country. It will benefit the province’s mining and agricultural sectors.

The N4 is the primary economic artery in the province and plays a pivotal role in the movement of people and goods. This road also demonstrates what can be achieved through public-private partnerships.

Much more still needs to be done in the development of road infrastructure and the critical involvement of emerging businesses in such projects, especially in the VTSD areas. The recently revised regulations of the Preferential Procurement Policy Framework Act give effect to a transformation agenda that overhauls how we involve, engage and empower small businesses and people affected by the implementation of projects.

We also welcome SANRAL’s involvement of grade 1 contractors in the litter-collecting part of routine road maintenance projects on the N12 and other roads in the province. This will lead to the upskilling of the contractors to higher grades, as determined by the Construction Industry Development Board.

Our people from villages, townships and small dorpies depend on roads to meet their daily needs, such as earning a living and reaching government services.

Let’s continue on this path of greater growth and turn our roads into conduits of change – to the quality of our people’s lives and greater economic development.

Supra Obakeng Ramoeletsi Mahumapelo is the Premier of North West