SANRAL creates job opportunities and helps develop skills by training locals in the fields of construction and road building, while encouraging active participation of local small businesses.
Developing and uplifting communities is part of the ethos of the South African National Roads Agency (SOC) Limited (SANRAL).
SANRAL does not just develop in the physical sense – in terms of infrastructure – it ensures the communities along the country’s roads develop economically as well.
Since its establishment 20 years ago, SANRAL has ensured that a significant portion of its work benefits the local labour force, including small-, medium- and micro-enterprises (SMMEs) situated close to its national road network.
Long-term economic benefits
Educating and training young people is also an important aspect of SANRAL’s work. The key motivation is to enable local communities to continue to enjoy the long-term economic benefits of SANRAL projects long after they have been completed.
The agency wants to ensure communities participate in empowerment initiatives. SANRAL’s community development programmes focus on providing pedestrian facilities and safe access points next to the national road network.
SANRAL creates job opportunities and helps develop skills by training locals in the fields of construction and road building. It encourages – and, in fact, requires – the active participation of local small businesses on all our projects.
During the last financial year, SANRAL has undertaken 24 community development projects in various provinces.
The combined value of these amounted to R257-million. The prioritisation of SMMEs, particularly those owned by women and black people, including the hiring and training of local workers, continues community development projects where labour-intensive construction methods are used.
The power of education
Through various partnerships with universities, SANRAL also continues to promote the teaching and learning of young people.
These partnerships include the SANRAL Chair in Mathematics, Science and Technology Education with the University of the Free State; the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Pipeline Project (STEM PP) at Nelson Mandela University and the Family Maths and Science Programme.
To strengthen its community development efforts, SANRAL is developing a focused strategy to ensure maximum impact.
As stated in the National Development Plan, roads are South Africa’s largest single public asset. They are conduits for economic activity. We connect people so they can do business.
This is an opinion piece by Skhumbuzo Macozoma, SANRAL CEO.