Participants at the African Roads Maintenance Funds Association (ARMFA) Annual General Assembly (AGA), hosted by the Road Fund in Senegal earlier this year have discussed and agreed that relations between Road Funds and Road Authorities in Africa need to be strengthened.
This is one of the many topics tackled during the AGA, which brought Road Funds from 34 African Countries together as members of ARMFA to jointly review and agree on how best to keep Road Funds relevant under the theme “Sustainability of Road Maintenance Funds”.
In his Contribution to the discussions, the Road Fund Lesotho Chief Executive Officer Mr. Nkekeletse Makara said the issue of the relationship between the Road Funds and Road Authorities remain critical to ensure efficiency in the whole system.
“The relevance of either organisations depends on the level of understanding that the two need each other to coexist; because Road Funds are not implementing agencies, they need the Road Authorities to perform their duties efficiently so that roads remain well maintained, otherwise the Road Funds get blamed for non-performance as they collect from the road users,” he reiterated.
Participants shared the same sentiments, and ARMFA member states agreed to embark in rigorous stakeholder engagement initiatives where the Funds will ensure that the agencies comprehend well their role in maintenance of roads.
A lot of resolutions were adopted at the AGA aimed at enhancing performance of Road Funds amidst the changing landscapes be it due to emergence of electric cars, challenges relating to climate change and effects of pandemics such as that of COVID 19.
Members agreed that it was important to align and strengthen strategic partnerships with other entities such as the World Bank and to seek affiliation with the African Union.
At the meeting the President of ARMFA Mr. Ali Ipinge welcomed the newest member Angola from the Southern African Focal Group and welcomed back Gabon from the Central African Focal Group which has been away for some time.
To ensure a coordinated management of ARMFA, member countries have been clustered into four regional focal groups; West African Focal Group, Southern African Focal Group, Central African Focal Group and East African Focal Group.