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Stray livestock worries Roads Dept chief

Staff Writer
The Roads Department has expressed concern about negligent cattle farmers, who allow their animals to roam the streets.

Roads Department director, Kabo Kote said yesterday that since one-year contracts for more than 20 companies who were responsible for animal control on roads expired last November, the department has been burdened with maintaining, and patrolling roads to chase stray livestock off roads.  He complained that though the department is trying to take responsibility of preventing road accidents, livestock owners are not playing their part. 

"Our maintenance team patrols from 16:00hrs to 22:00hrs and this is not enough.  We are understaffed and patrolling the roads is an extra burden on us altogether," he said.

Kote complained that some cattle owners intentionally cut the fence and open gates for livestock to roam the busy roads, which leads to unnecessary road accidents.  He said cattle owners' negligence is costing the government a lot of money that is spent on hiring more staff to fix fences and gates, and to pay staff overtime for chasing livestock off the highways. He however said that the department has advertised invited companies registered with Public Procurement and Asset Disposal Board (PPADB) to submit their proposals for patrolling roads.  "We hope that by April 1, those

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that would be fortunate enough to get the job will start to mend fences, gates, pick up rubbish along roads and most importantly keep livestock away from roads," he said.

In Palapye, Station Traffic Officer Robert Batshu said that the accident rates were still high despite efforts by the previous road patrol companies. "There is no difference, whether they are there or not, we still have a high number of road accidents," he said.  
Deputy Director of Traffic, Katlholo Mosimanegape told Mmegi that last year a total of 2,254 road accidents involved livestock.  He said the A1 road recorded the highest number of accidents involving livestock with 439 collisions and seven deaths.  A3 road came second with 322 crashes and five deaths, while A2 recorded 213 collisions and three deaths. 

Mosimanepape warned that any person who allows livestock to stray onto the roads without anybody in charge shall be guilty of an offence and shall be sentenced to a fine of not less than P1,000 or more than P3,000 or to imprisonment for a term less than six months or more than 12 months, or both.



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