For years the government has been harping about dualising the Harare-Masvingo-Beitbridge highway. Not only have they failed to do that on countless occasions, they have also failed to repair and maintain the current road resulting in massive potholes and accidents.

Video credit Killer Zivhu and Zimeye

SADC’s main trade artery is being neglected

For years the government through ZINARA has charged motorists who use the country’s major highways, including this one, a toll fee, a fee foreigners now have to pay in foreign currency. The reason given for this is that the government wants to use these funds to maintain these roads.

Not many roads have been repaired ever since the toll gates were introduced. Instead, corruption after corruption scandal has been reported on ZINARA. Bosses and government bigwigs have been accused of using the funds to buy themselves luxury vehicles and make themselves rich. Meanwhile, accidents that can be attributed to the bad state of the roads are conveniently pawned off to driver error and speeding.

The Beitbridge-Harare highway is SADC’s main trade arteries as goods are ferried to and from Zimbabwe, South Africa, DRC and Zambia via this road. Botswana and other SADC countries are reported to be in the process of finding an alternative route. With Kangula bridge nearing completion this new route might be preferred in the region at the expense of Masvingo road depriving Zimbabwe of essential revenue.