Tired of waiting for government support, residents of Kajokeji County in Central Equatoria State decided to mobilize resources to rehabilitate impassable roads in their community.
Evans Lou Lopita, the chairman for the community road project said they pooled together 50,000 U.S dollars to start rehabilitating more than 10 km of roads linking the town to vital facilities such as hospital and the only airstrip.
“The initiative started last year as a result of poor road network which was impeding access to vital services such as health,” Lopita told The Juba Echo on Monday.
Lopita said that more than two people have died while trying to evacuate patients for treatment to the main KajoKeji civil hospital.
“We will now be able to benefit from the hospital which is run by MSF,we will have access to Wudu market which is the biggest market selling agriculture produce, and also the military will be able to provide swift security to the people when needed,” he said.
Lopita said they hired Ugandan company, Doppler Construction Company to construct the feeder roads.
Robert Wani, a bodaboda rider in Kajokeji said prior to the rehabilitation of the roads, motorists found it difficult to navigate the dirt roads filled with potholes.
“There were places with potholes where we faced difficulties to move, we are now comfortable because we are able to travel to places like Leikor, Tipere and Mere,” Wani said.
Phanuel Dumo, the Commissioner of Kajokeji County said this was the second initiative by the community to repair roads in the area.
“There were challenges here and there because initially people were divided with some people saying the money being contributed will go to individuals,” Dumo said.
Mary Keji, the deputy director for relief and rehabilitation commission in Kajokeji said they are relieved to have finally repaired the roads.
“We are really happy, the partners were finding difficulty in accessing the sites where they serve our people in the community, also the accessibility to the hospital and even the airstrip will be very easy for humanitarian organizations to move around,” Keji said.
Kenyi Henry John, the acting youth leader for Kajokeji community said the road project will be helpful to the community.
“We are so glad to see this road project finally coming to an end, we were so much affected before by being cut off from focal point of services, accessibility to Kajokeji secondary school was difficult,” John said.