National Road Fund Agency (NRFA) Chief Executive Officer, Wallece Mumba says no funds from toll gates were diverted toward the fight against cholera, but an allocation for corporate social responsibility was used for the cause.
And Mumba said the NRFA Act has weaknesses that should be addressed to meet the current demand.
Mumba who is in Central Province as part of a nationwide tour with members of staff for public consultative meetings, said there was no diversion of funds under the NRFA.
He said the agency was mandated under the corporate social responsibility policy to budget for community welfare, which included the fight against cholera.
“There is no diversion in terms of funds under the NRFA. We have a corporate social responsibility policy. You know, we are collecting funds from the local people and we need be able to also pay back to the community,” Mumba said.
He said the agency could not sit back and do nothing when the cholera outbreak was affecting movements of people and eventually affecting toll gate collections.
“During the cholera outbreak, movements were restricted which had a negative impact on our collections. So we could not sit back and do nothing. And after all, it’s also part of our responsibility to finance drainage works which have an effect on cholera. We did not do anything outside our mandate as an agency,” Mumba said.
And Mumba said the NRFA Act had weaknesses that needed to be addressed to meet the current demand for road infrastructure development.
“We have had our Act for the last 15 years. It was enacted in 2002 and from that time there has been no major amendments. But looking at the demand now and also the dynamics over the years, we are moving away from just being fund managers and beginning to focus on resource mobilisation,” said Mumba.
“But there are some weaknesses within the Act and we need to revise it so that we respond to the current challenges and demands. That is why we have embarked on this nationwide exercise to engage the public on how best we can review our Act.”