In an effort to lessen the incidence of collisions at junctions, the Gweru City Council (GCC) Environment Committee has suggested placing more traffic signals close to the broken ones.
The city’s 16 traffic signals have all been out of commission for the past eight years.
Due to a legal dispute with Emobuild Construction, a contractor that was hired in 2013 and paid in full to construct traffic lights in the city centre, the local government was unable to fix the lights.
However, the traffic lights started to fail soon after they were installed.
Emobuild was subject to arbitration by the GCC for breaching its warranty. The City Council is suing for reimbursement for claims it made to drivers who were hurt in collisions at robot-controlled intersections.
“As a council, on the issue of traffic lights, we said we were going to install new ones and leave Zhang (Emobuild owner)’s (lights) as they are. As the environment committee, we have proposed to install duplicate traffic lights next to the malfunctioning ones to reduce the number of traffic accidents taking place at the intersections that are not controlled,” he said.
Cllr Chineni said the committee had apprised management on the proposal for consideration before a resolution is adopted by the full council.
“We have apprised management on this issue and they said they would look into it and make a decision. We have to resume the traffic lights project since it is long overdue,” he said.
Acting town clerk Mr Livingston Churu confirmed that management was seized with the matter.
“The issue of traffic lights is work in progress and very soon, we will see its commencement,” he said.
In 2019, the council approached the Government to intervene in the matter, but the latter could not act since the issue is pending at the courts.
Some of the intersections with dysfunctional traffic lights in Gweru
Over the years, the Midlands capital has been witnessing traffic jams as a result of traffic lights that are not working.
The council’s plan to install traffic lights has been welcomed by residents, who had for long been demanding that the traffic lights be fixed.
Gweru Residents and Ratepayers Association executive director, Mr Cornilia Selipiwe, said the installation of traffic lights would reduce the number of accidents in the city.