Johannesburg – The Gauteng Department of Roads and Transport has been accused of failing to service provincial roads, leading to major insurance companies incurring multiple claims due to poorly maintained roads.
Evert du Plessis, the DA’s Gauteng spokesperson on roads and logistics, said the delay in appointing service providers by the Gauteng Department of Roads and Transport was negatively impacting the maintenance schedule of the department, forcing motorists to use roads that were not properly maintained.
Du Plessis said according to a survey conducted by an insurance company, more than R24 million in claims for damages to cars by potholes in Johannesburg had been lodged during the third quarter of 2022.
“Every year, this department fails to meet its target of visually assessing surfaced roads in the province. For the 2022/2023 financial year, only 700.55km of surfaced roads were visually assessed, despite a target of 4 571km being set,” he said.
Du Plessis said according to the department, this target was not met because of delays in appointing a service provider.
“It is now fast becoming a trend within this department that service providers are not appointed on time, which points to poor planning and a lack of leadership.
“Furthermore, this is also having a negative impact on job creation in the province. The maintenance of infrastructure, such as roads, is a key driver in creating employment opportunities for our residents,” Du Plessis said.
He said if the department was serious about ensuring that the roads were properly maintained, they would evaluate the current system they have in place to appoint service providers.
“It is unacceptable that the economic hub of the country, which is a key node for the transport of goods to other provinces, has such poorly maintained roads,” Du Plessis said.
He said his party would be tabling follow-up questions to determine what measures would be put in place to ensure that this target was met.