Infrastructure and Housing minister Ronald Chitotela says engineers from Japanese International Cooperation Agency have submitted a preliminary design of the new Luangwa Bridge.
Chitotela said the design indicate that the new Luangwa bridge will be 500 metres long compared to the current one which is 300 metres long.
“What they are suggesting is that the Luangwa Bridge will not curve.
So yes we received a team from JICA who have done the preliminary design and have submitted a report. A report was very impressive because they are saying a direct bridge will reduce the cost because of the rock view. So the distance will be about 500 metres instead of the current which is 300 metres,” Chitotela said.
Chitotela said when President Lungu went to Japan, the Prime Minister promised him to send a team to check on the bridge.
The minister said this after outgoing Eastern Province Permanent Secretary Chanda Kasolo asked him on how far the Luangwa Bridge project had gone when the minister paid a courtesy call on Tuesday.
Chitotela was in Eastern Province to check on the progress on the reconstruction of Msuzi Bridge which was washed away recently.
Early this month Infrastructure and Housing permanent secretary Charles Mushota informed Paramount Chief Mpezeni that a team of engineers from Japan was in the country to look at Luangwa Bridge which needs replacement.
“We have a team of technical people, engineers from Japan who have come to look at the Luangwa Bridge. As you are aware your royal highness that bridge is very old and needs replacement like yesterday and government desires that that bridge is worked on as quickly as possible so that it doesn’t hamper in future the movement of the people in and out of the province to Lusaka,” Mushota said.