SADC to implement performance-based road contracts

13 Nov 2015 16:00pm
WINDHOEK, 13 NOV (NAMPA) – Countries in the SADC region are working towards finalising guidelines for the implementation of performance-based and area-wide maintenance contracts in the road sector.
Delegates from Namibia, South Africa, Mozambique, Tanzania and Angola held a workshop here on a draft of guidelines for performance-based contracting for Southern Africa Development Community (SADC) member countries. The meeting commenced on Wednesday and ended Friday.
Speaking at a media conference here on Friday, the president of the Association of Southern African National Road Agencies (Asanra), Conrad Lutombi explained it will cost Asanra US dollars 104 000 (about N.dollars 1.48 million) to implement this method.
Lutombi is also the Chief Executive Officer of Namibia’s Roads Authority (RA).
Asanra is a forum for networking on policy formulation and technical exchange among industry and professionals in the transport sector. It affords members the opportunity to share and exchange experience and innovative ideas, hence establishing mutually agreed best practices.
“Today’s new generation of roads agencies face the very challenging task of managing road networks in an optimal manner due to scarce financial resources because of competing national priorities. In an attempt to improve service delivery, some roads authorities have moved, or are considering a move to alternative forms of maintenance contracting, including performance-based and area-wide maintenance contracts,” he noted.
Explaining how the system currently works, Lutombi said traditional road maintenance is based on the amount of work to be done and the amount to be paid for various work items. In contrast, long-term performance-based road management and maintenance contracts define the minimum conditions of road assets that must be maintained by the contractor. They also define other services such as the collection and management of asset inventory data, emergency response and replies to public requests, complaints and feedback, he said.
Payment is based on how well the contractor manages to comply with the defined performance standards and not on the amount of work and number of services carried out. Performance-based contracts define the final product, not the amount of input in the work.
In a bid to implement this method in the region, Asanra appointed an implementation team under the auspices of its construction and maintenance standing committee to develop the guidelines for the implementation of performance-based and area-wide maintenance contracts in the SADC region.
“This method has the great benefit of ensuring quality deliverance by the contractor, increased transparency and a reduction in the chance for corruption,” added Lutombi.
Asanra’s main goal is enhancing regional policy coordination and road transport system integration in order to improve intra-regional road transport efficiency and lower transport costs.