Fungai Lupande Mash Central Bureau
Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution Senator Monica Mavhunga has visited Kent 1 and Kent dams at Iron Duke whose dam walls collapsed a fortnight ago causing downstream flooding which led to loss of life and destruction of a bridge.
Minister Mavhunga visited the Kent 1 and 2 dam sites to assess the damage. She commended the Zimbabwe National Army and Mazowe Rural District Council (RDC) for swift response to the disaster.
“People have come together to assist this community. This bridge linked people from Masembura to Glendale and Harare. Farmers used the same road to access markets,” she said.
“I want to encourage farmers to work together and cooperate with the Zimbabwe National Water Authority (ZINWA) in their regular inspections. This will enable early detection of damages to our dams to avert disaster.
“Please don’t deny ZINWA access to farms to inspect farms. In Matepatepa, two more dams including Chemukute collapsed.
“Illegal miner must desist from haphazard mining. We are not sure if digging of the dam walls contributed to the collapse.”
Mazowe RDC Engineer Cleopas Mupereki said they have combined resources with the army and their target is to complete the bridge in 14 days.
“We are happy that we are at 75 percent completion on day 10. Cosmetic and protective work will be done later as people use the bridge,” he said.
“We mobilised equipment, ZNA brought in an excavator, dozer, roller compactor, back hauler loader, tipper, a tractor and tipping trucks. We received donation from miners and milling companies.
“The local community is assisting us with labour. We have a workforce of 44 people and on the eighth day the bridge was passable. Our challenge is the weather and continuous rains is hindering hauling of gravel.”