Roads Authority Jobs Open to All Citizens

The Roads Authority (RA) says the recruitment of skilled workers on all RA undertaken national road projects should not only benefit or be reserved exclusively for people living in the area where the work takes place, but is open to all Namibian citizens.

The RA was reacting to complaints raised by some Okondjatu residents in the Otjozondjupa Region that they are being sidelined for jobs on the construction of the Gobabis-Grootfontein trunk road, while people from the two Kavango regions were given priority. Residents of the area criticise the China Henan International Cooperation Group (Chico) for ‘secretively’ recruiting over 20 people from the two Kavango regions for jobs that local inhabitants were qualified to do. The RA confirmed receiving such a complaint and said the matter was attended to “and the recruitment process is running smoothly.”

As per the RA policy, the recruitment is done by the appointed contractor in consultation with the governors of the regions where the project is being executed, as well as constituency councillors and traditional authorities,” according to a statement by the RA.

Moreover, the RA says during the recruitment process for unskilled jobs, priority is given to those living in the area where the project is being executed. But the RA said the recruitment of skilled operators is not restricted to the Omaheke and Otjozondjupa regions and is open to all Namibians. “Appointments in these positions are based on relevant educational background and technical experience. Nonetheless, unskilled workers are sourced from the areas where the project is taking place,” according to the RA.

The company says 110 skilled and unskilled workers are employed on the project, but during peak periods the number of workers could increase to 350. One resident complained that a driver was told to pay N$10 000 or face dismissal for a tyre that was punctured while he was on duty, but the RA says it has not been informed of such an incident. Chico’s site manager, Tiger Lee, said he is aware of what happened, but no one was threatened with dismissal or a punitive fine, since everything goes through him. The tarring of the Gobabis-Grootfontein road, which passes through Okondjatu and links the Omaheke and Otjozondjupa regions, is expected to ease transportation worries along this route and provide huge economic spin-offs for residents of the villages in the vicinity of the road. Phase one, which is the construction of the Otjinene-Okamatapati road, comes at a cost of N$575 million and is expected to be completed by August 2016. The TR 142 road is an extension of the Gobabis-Otjinene road, which is over 157km long and was completed two years ago.

Source : New Era