Wednesday, January 9, 2013


DREAM COME TRUE- Elegant President Joyce Banda (above and below) at the function











Your Excellency Richard Banda, SC. Chief Justice (Retired)
The Right Honourable Khumbo Hastings Kachali, Vice President of the Republic of Malawi.
Honourable Chimango Mughogho Gondwe, M.P., Deputy Minister of Transport and Public Works.
All Cabinet Ministers and Deputy Ministers present here
All Senior government officials present here
District Commissioner for Mzimba District
Paramount Chiefs and all Chiefs present here
The Representative for the Contractor Fargo Limited;
The Representive for the Supervising Engineer, Connex Consulting Engineers;
Members of the National Executive Committee of the Peoples Party present here
Distinguished Guests;
Ladies and Gentlemen.

It is a great pleasure and honour for me to perform the official opening of the Ekwendeni – Ezondweni – Mtwalo road today. The construction and completion of this road marks yet another milestone in the development of this country, the Northern region and Mzimba district in particular. Today’s function is another demonstration of my government’s commitment to ensure the continued development of the Malawi’s infrastructure is achieved. This is in line with the Economic Recovery Plan that my Government is implementing. The Economic Recovery Plan has, among the five priority areas, singled out Infrastructure Development particularly investment in roads and bridges very highly. Roads and bridges are the most important mode of transport for Malawi as they carry over 90 percent of goods and passengers hence without a good road network, the Malawi economy would suffer greatly.

Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen

The Ekwendeni – Ezondweni – Mtwalo road section forms part of the Mzimba – Eswazini – Kafukule – Ezondweni – Ekwendeni road and its importance cannot be overemphasized as this is the old M1 road that passes through a number of important, economically productive and heavily populated areas. The development of this road has and will provide accessibility and mobility to the people living in these areas. It will link farmers and other productive sectors such mining, tourism, manufacturing and merchandise trade to factors of production and markets. It will improve access to social services.

Improved transportation reduces transport costs and leads to creation of marketing networks. High quality and availability of transport facilities provide social benefits through improved access to social services such as education, health and markets by facilitating mobility, especially for rural communities.

In the short term, construction of road infrastructures provides increased incomes to the rural areas through employment of people and provides opportunities for merchandise and commodity trade. Lack of adequate road infrastructure is one of the major factors contributing to high poverty levels in rural Malawi.

Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen

The upgrading and construction of the Ekwendeni – Ezondweni – Mtwalo road section is only the first phase of a number of projects that my government has planned over the next few years. I am pleased to report that the second phase of the project which covers the Mzimba – Mtangatanga road section is at an advanced stage. Furthermore, designs for the Mtangatanga – Mzalangwe road have been completed and construction works have since commenced and making good progress. The third phase would cover the section from Ezondweni through Kafukule to Mzalangwe and finally the section from Mtwalo to Njakwa. This will make Mzimba district well linked with good road networked.

I would like to assure the people of Mzimba and the Northern Region that there will be no stoppages in between the phases until the whole road project is completed.

Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen

I would like to state further here and now that the development efforts of my government will not end with the construction of this project. As I am speaking now the procurement process for the construction of the Jenda – Embangweni – Edingeni – Euthini – Rumphi road is in progress. You will appreciate that the distance covered for this project is over 200 kilometers from Jenda to Rumphi. Due to distance, the road project has been divided into a number of manageable phases. The first phase will cover the construction of the section from Jenda – Embangweni – Edingeni, the Headquarters for Inkosi Ya Makosi M’mbelwa IV. Construction works of the road would be awarded very soon for the first 15 kilometers from Jenda. My government has allocated over MK500 million in the 2012/13 financial year. My government is busy talking to a number of donors, some of whom have already expressed interest to fund this project. These include the Abu Dhabi Fund, among others. This road project will bring a lot of economic and social benefits to the people living along the corridor.

Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen

My government is further focusing on a number of road projects in the Northern region, these include among others;

The Rumphi – Nyika – Chitipa road project. Economic feasibility study and preliminary engineering design to assess the economic and technical viability of the road project is in progress with funding from Arab Economic Development Bank for Africa (BADEA).

However, in the meantime some activities are under design to upgrade to paved and gravel standard in some difficult sections of the road to ease travel and access to the Nyika National Park with funding from the World Bank; and

Mzuzu – Nkhata Bay road project. The African Development Bank has expressed interest in financing this road project and my government is positive that very soon rehabilitation of the project would commence in earnest.

Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen

Let me at this stage give a vote of thanks and appreciation to the following:

The chairman , board members, management and staff of the Roads Authority for providing overall management and supervision of the designs and implementation of the construction works on behalf of the government;
The design and supervising engineers for the road Connex Consulting Engineers for the excellent designs and supervision services that ensured quality control for the works and also assisted in the settlement of claims; and finally,
The contractor for the road, Fargo Limited for the excellent construction of the road works which we can see today as a product of their diligent and professional work.

To the general public living along the road corridor, my appeal is that you should make sure that the road is well taken care of at all times.

Do not vandalise the road furniture which include among others road signs, guard rails, handrails and marker posts that are installed for the improvement of road safety. These must therefore not be vandalised. My request to the Honourable Members of Parliament, Chiefs and responsible citizens of Malawi is that let us all work together in stopping this malpractice which is costing Government huge resources.

Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen

It is now my singular honour and pleasure to declare this road officially opened.

May God bless you all and mother Malawi.

I thank you.

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