SANRAL is making a difference to community development through its projects.
SANRAL’s positive impact on the broader South African society through community development is becoming entrenched and more appreciated as its responsibilities for the management of the national and provincial road network continue to grow.
Deep in northern KwaZulu-Natal, the daily lives of communities have been enhanced with the sidewalks, bus and taxi lay byes, retaining walls and access roads to schools that have been built by SANRAL.
12km of concrete walkways have been built on both sides of a section of Route R22 between Manguzi town and the Mozambique border.
The project started in November 2015 and was completed in June 2017, with an expenditure of R14.42-million.
Pedestrians at risk
Ridhwaan Mahomed, SANRAL Eastern Region Project Manager, said before work had commenced on the project, several vehicle and pedestrian accidents had been recorded in the area.
He said: “Pedestrians, mostly young pupils on their way to and from school, would be seen walking within the motorised vehicle lanes.
“This was highly risky, especially because many of the pedestrians were young children. Thus, it was decided to construct safe and proper pedestrian traffic facilities.”
Mahomed said the project area was rural, with limited opportunities for income for families to sustain themselves.
This project was therefore a valuable source of opportunities.
There was job creation – R2.5-million was paid in salaries towards local labour, of which R736 011 each was paid to youth and women.
Four local subcontractors were employed and were paid a total of R1.3-million.
Since there are a high number of unskilled individuals in rural areas, SANRAL ensured that people were trained, and a total of 60 skills-training certificates were issued with R277 241 having been invested in training.
Mahomed said: “Roads exist to connect communities, to open new horizons, to bring people to opportunities and opportunities to people.
“SANRAL has always strived to support the efforts by the government to push back the frontiers of poverty and improve the lives of South African citizens in general by promoting community development through all its projects.”
Thokozani Mbuyisa, owner of Mgadla Trading, one of the SMMEs involved in the project, said he was grateful to SANRAL for the opportunity to work on the project.