JOBURG – The Johannesburg Roads Agency (JRA) is currently dealing with backlog issues caused by the lockdown, as they enter Level 2.
The Johannesburg Roads Agency (JRA) is intensifying the repair of structural defects on almost 600 municipal roads following a five months hiatus imposed by the national lockdown.
Transport MMC councillor Nonhlanhla Makhuba and the agency’s management have announced plans to reinstate regular service delivery blitzes, a city-wide mayoral initiative aimed at eliminating potholes and structural defects on the City’s road network.
According to the City, the JRA’s service delivery blitz deploys regional task teams to repair all damaged roads across all seven regions of Johannesburg within record time. “The MMC’s announcement came after the country moved to Level 2 of the lockdown, whose harder version restricted public movement to curb the infectious spread of the Covid-19 pandemic,” said the City in a statement on 25 August.
The entity began rolling out repair work in Region B’s Bordeaux on Tuesday [25 August], which focused on road resurfacing. “Repair work has had to commence with immediate effect given that we have an immense backlog which accumulated over the lockdown period,” said Makhuba.
Some parts of the City’s road network have been left damaged after excavations were carried out to install fibre cables and repair water pipes. “This poses a safety hazard to road users, especially if the areas are not made safe after work has been carried out. The current road repair backlog is at 589 citywide,” she said.
The JRA’s head of regional operations, Mzwandile Nkonyane highlighted that not all problems on the City’s roads emanate from potholes, especially in Region B where there is no backlog on potholes, rather issues of restoring the infrastructure.
“The City needs help from external contractors. We have witnessed a change since the ‘War on potholes’ initiative was launched and are currently dealing with a backlog of 330 defects that need to be repaired,” said Nkonyane.
He hopes work would be completed by the end of September or in the second week of October. Nkonyane said the JRA remains committed to maintaining the structural integrity of the City’s roads. He’s urged members of the public to hold the municipality accountable should set targets not be met. “The time of making excuses in the JRA has passed.”
Makhuba conceded that the JRA is grappling with challenges of restoring the structural integrity of the City’s road network. “We are intensifying our work to improve progress on repairs,” she said.
She has urged members of the public to report the theft and vandalism of road infrastructure, which costs the City millions of rands in lost revenue.