Dilapidated roads a safety risk to Mpumalanga

Issued by Sonja Boshoff: MP – Member of the National Council of Provinces (NCOP)
22 Feb 2024 in Press Releases

The Democratic Alliance (DA) in Thaba Chweu is deeply concerned about the dilapidated state of the R540, R536 and the R36 Roads that poses a safety risk to motorists and hinders economic and business activities for the residents of Mashishing (formerly Lydenburg), Dullstroom, Bambi and Hazyview. 


On 23 November 2023, the DA addressed a letter to the MEC of Public Works, Roads & Transport, Mandla Ndlovu, putting out in no uncertain terms the state of the above roads, and how their dilapidated state negatively affects motorists and businesses. 


A response was received from the MEC that attention would be given and that teams would be sent out to evaluate these roads and patch where necessary. The R536 was subsequently opened, and some work was undertaken on the R540, but was unfortunately substandard and has worsened excessively since some patching was done in December 2023. 


The R36 route, which carries excessive heavy vehicular traffic transporting ore, has deteriorated drastically and has led to an increased safety risk, vehicle damage and disruptions to daily commutes and transportation of goods. 


Potholes, uneven surfaces, and insufficient road markings have created hazardous conditions on those roads – increasing the likelihood of accidents and injuries. Motorists are forced to navigate these treacherous conditions, leading to delays, frustration, and additional costs due to vehicle repairs. The impact is not only felt by individuals but also by businesses reliant on efficient transportation. 


The condition of the roads is hindering economic activity, affecting productivity and growth in the region. Tourism has been negatively affected as travellers would rather travel the N4 to get to the Lowveld and no longer pass through the towns of Dullstroom and Lydenburg placing the hospitality industry at risk. Addressing these challenges requires urgent action and investment in road infrastructure. 


The DA reiterates its call to MEC Ndlovu asking for intervention from government, in collaboration with relevant stakeholders, to urgently prioritize the maintenance and upgrading of the above-mentioned Routes to ensure the safety and well-being of all road users. We urge authorities to take immediate steps to address the state of these roads as it is crucial for safety, economic prosperity, and overall development of the areas affected.