Fossil Contracting’s shoddy storm water drains collapse after a month

Moses Ziyambi

Wire gauzes covering inlets into a storm water drain which was built by Fossil Contracting along Simon Mazorodze Avenue in Masvingo have collapsed hardly a month after the company completed the job, EnviroPress can report.

Some motorists have put rocks around the gapping holes to warn other of the dangers of falling into them.

Fossil Contracting began working on the road earlier this year, re-sealing a 1km stretch of the avenue, with a 100m-long drain being built on a section of that stretch.

However, the company used substandard material on the gauzes protecting the inlets into the drain, with the metal giving in to little pressure from vehicle wheels.

When contacted for comment, Masvingo provincial roads engineer Peter Mukome said he did not know about the shoddy work.

“You will have to come and take me to see it for myself then I give you an expert opinion because I haven’t seen it. You should also send me the pictures,” said Mukome.

He accused the reporter of focusing only on negative stories.

After priming the stretch of the road, work was interrupted for a prolonged period ostensibly because the company’s asphalt mixer had broken down, and it looked like it was going to be one of the numerous unfinished roadworks in the country.

Work was only completed after the media began to report about it but some weaknesses are already beginning to show on the tarred surface.

Fossil Contracting is owned by controversial but wealthy businessman Kudakwashe Tagwireyi whose vast portfolio in construction, energy, transport and mining has earned him the moniker Queen Bee for his alleged capture of the state.

The company is also part of the three member TEFOMA consortium of indigenous contractors which was earlier this year awarded the government tender to build the Mbudzi Flyover in Harare at an inflated cost, according to critics.