Government launches Operation Vala Zonke in effort to fix potholes across SA

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The Department of Transport is embarking on an ambitious national project to repair potholes across South Africa (SA). The launch is set to take place in Vereeniging on Monday.

Operation Vala Zonke is part of a 16-month campaign, focusing on provincial and municipal roads.

It will be spearheaded by South African National Roads Agency (Sanral), which is expected to work with provincial and municipal officials.

Keynote speakers at the project launch include Transport Minister Fikile Mbalula and Sanral representatives.

Operation Vala Zonke I Government embarks on a national project to repair all potholes: Mbalula

Video: South Africa is facing a huge road infrastructure maintenance backlog

Bloemfontein motorist plead with government to improve the state of roads

Motorists in the Mangaung Metro Municipality, in Bloemfontein, continue to complain about the poor state of roads.

This is as the Free State Department of Roads and Transport is expected to officially launch a programme to patch potholes across the province this week.

Some motorists have pleaded with the municipality and relevant structures to improve the worsening situation, as most roads are dangerous to drive.

“If they could just fix the potholes for the cars, tyres are expensive,” says a motorist.

The motorist also pleaded with government to assist.

“We are having serious problems. Even now, I had a tyre burst with my car now. But can our government please help us with the roads. You can see that the pothole here is not even a pothole,it’s a hole,” adds the motorist.

South Africa is facing a huge road infrastructure maintenance backlog estimated to be more than R200-billion.

As much as 40% of the provincial road network has reached the end of its design life.

Potholes affecting commuters between Giyani and Modjadjiskoof, Limpopo

Motorists on the Brand Boontjie road, between Giyani and Modjadjiskloof in Limpopo, say the pothole-riddled road is negatively affecting their livelihoods. The stretch of road that connects Mooketsi, Modjadjiskloof,  Mooketsi and Giyani. It runs through several commercial areas that include farms, a school and factories.

Motorists say the business community has on numerous occasions patched the potholes, but the patches wear away soon after.

Learners at Platland Primary School travel to the farm school between Maphalle and Modjadjiskloof. They commute daily on the pothole-riddled stretch of road from their homes in Moeketsi.

The bus driver, Abel Sithole says the road conditions make his job difficult.

“I ferry school kids from Mooketsi to Platland Primary School daily. These potholes make it difficult for me to do my job, sometimes they cause the bus to break down. I hope government can fix this road,” says Sithole.

Sithole says his employer often has to pay large amounts of money to fix the bus due to damage caused by potholes.

“When the bus breaks down it is quite expensive to fix. When there is a breakdown, often we need to ask for lifts for the children because their parents don’t want them to miss school, this situation is really bad,” adds Sithole.

Additional reporting by Pimani Baloyi