Contractor clarifies roundabout debate

HARARE - Bitumen World Civil Engineering Contractors have cleared the air over the controversy surrounding the construction of a roundabout in Harare.

The roundabout, which is located along Harare Drive Road and Rolf Avenue intersection went viral on social media, particularly on Twitter and ignited a debate over who constructed it.

Zanu PF supporters credited the government for funding the project through its road agency Zimbabwe National Roads Administration (Zinara) while opposition supporters attributed the development to the Harare City Council which is dominated by MDC Alliance councillors.

The row also roped in political players and public figures, with former Harare Mayor Ben Manyenyeni saying the roundabout was fully funded by the City of Harare.

Bitumen World has since issued a statement to clear the air over the confusion relating to the construction of the roundabout at the road which rings the capital.

Bitumen World managing director Andre Zietsman said the traffic circle is a product of a contract between his company and the City of Harare and funded by Zinara.

Zietsman said the contract was agreed to by the three parties in February this year.

“This was a joint commitment from all three parties of which everyone fulfilled their role resulting in the beautification of Harare for the benefit of its road users,” said Zietsman.

Zietsman said the scope of the initial project was to rehabilitate 4,5 kilometres of Harare Drive between Borrowdale and Drew roads by strengthening and widening the road to a full 10 metres.

He said towards the end of the 12-week project, Bitumen World was awarded the additional works to construct a traffic circle at the Harare Drive, Gaydon Road, Rolf Avenue intersection.

Further to the general construction of the traffic circle, Zietsman said, Bitumen World were granted the rights by City of Harare to carry out horticultural services in and around the roundabout.

“Over and above any commitments Bitumen World took financial responsibility for the landscaping of the traffic circle and surrounding quadrants, implemented an irrigation system, erected solar-powered street lights, manufactured elephant tusk furnishings and topped it off with blue lighting effects at no additional cost to client or ratepayers. It’s there for the community to enjoy,” he said.

Prior to the construction of the traffic circle, the intersection was an accident dark spot and motorists struggled navigating their way around the spot.
Whilst other Twitter users engaged in a row over who constructed the roundabout, some found it amusing.

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