Public Works Minister says hundreds of millions of dollars are required to reconstruct damaged roads and highways in the country.
25% Of Afghanistan’s Highways ‘Need Reconstruction’
Officials from different government organizations at a ceremony on Sunday discussed problems faced by the transportation sector and meanwhile exchanged views on ways to overcome the challenges.
Addressing the event, Yama Yari, the Minister of Public Works, said 25 percent of roads and highways are damaged in Afghanistan and that their reconstruction needs a high budget.
As a landlocked country, Afghanistan's provinces are connected with each other by highways.
Yari, said the roads and highways have been damaged very early due to various reason including commuting of overloaded trucks.
“Twenty-five percent of our roads have been damaged and need reconstruction. The reconstruction of the roads will cost hundreds of millions of dollars,” said Yari.
The Ministry of Finance said hundreds of millions of dollars have been wasted as the roads have been damaged very early.
“I want to clearly tell you that we constructed these roads by the money we had begged. In some cases, the problems were in government departments, they did not design them correctly. But now the residents of the country destroy parts of the roads,” Acting Finance Minister Mohammad Humayun Qayumi said.
Head of Transportation Companies Union, Tela Mohammad Atmanzai, called on government to prevent corruption in relevant departments which are involved in transportation and transit affairs on highways and roads.
“When a truck has loaded the allowed amount of goods arrives at the high Tonnage scales, they are asked to pay bribe. When the driver says that his truck is not overloaded, they are told that it is their own problem that their truck is not overloaded and they are asked to pay AFs 10,000,” said Atmanzai.
Officials from Ministry of Transport said that in many cases, one number plate is used by multiple trucks. The ministry said new number plates will be issued to trucks to overcome the problem.