Major infrastructure upgrade for North West roads

Friday, February 22, 2013

By Noluthando Mkhize

Mahikeng - Roads in the North West Province will undergo major upgrades in the financial year of 2012/13, Premier Thandi Modise announced in her State of the Province Address on Friday.

Formally opening the provincial legislature for the year in Mahikeng, she provided an update on the sprucing up of the 10 major North West “economic road arteries” President Jacob Zuma said should be upgraded in 2012.

The ten roads are part of the country’s major infrastructure development project.

“I am pleased to announce that the roads have been increased to 25 as part of the Strategic Infrastructure Projects (SIP4)…” said Modise while addressing the legislature.

She said work had begun on the construction of the roads in the form of routine patrol and emergency repairs, which includes pothole repair, signage, shoulders, drainage and drainage clearance.

The Presidential Infrastructure Commission is responsible for the facilitation of the integration and coordination of the long-term infrastructure projects across the spheres of government. Eighteen Strategic Infrastructure Projects (SIPs) have been developed.

The province held a road summit in all districts to identify and prioritise roads. The outcome of the summit provided the province with a ten-year Provincial Roads Plan.

She said about R80 million will be spent in the 2012/13 financial year and R200 million in the financial year of 2013/14 for road rehabilitation and maintenance through contract work.

Eighty percent of the work will be allocated to local SMMEs.

According to the Provincial Roads Plan, 30 road projects will be under construction in 2013/14 as well as 24 buildings.

Modise said the financial year of 2013/14 will be used for planning, design and procurement processes and implementation will occur in the 2014/15 financial year.

June 2013 marks the 100-year anniversary of the 1913 Native Land Act. The province of the North West has numerous successes in land redistribution.

“We are working with our communities to provide infrastructure and technical support to six land reform farms in Syferlaagte Trust, Tutubala, Seven Seasons, Mogakabe, Ikageng and Emarantia, which are beneficiaries in the current financial year.”

On the education front, the premier was upbeat about the improvement of the pass rate for matrics in 2012 but was less enthusiastic about the poor performance in mathematics and science. She said relevant stakeholders would meet to address this problem.

The Annual National Assessment results had revealed that the North West was the worst in the country when it comes to literacy and numeracy in grades three, six and nine.

She said Early Childhood Development (ECD) programmes would receive the much-needed attention.

“Early Childhood Development subsidy has been increase from R12 to R15 per child per day.”

The Departments of Education and Social Development will partner for the expansion of ECD programmes services in rural areas. –