The contractors said government’s failure to pay them for the works done so far has resulted in loss in the value of contracts of about 40 percent.
The Association of Consulting Engineers of Zambia and the Association of Building and Civil Engineering Contractors said in a joint statement that contractors and consultants are currently faced with various challenges due to the government’s failure to honor payments for works done.
“The government through the relevant agencies should forthwith start paying all outstanding debts due to contractors/consultants. Payments on existing contracts must be settled before signing new contracts. The government should immediately address the loss of contract value due to the weakened local currency and inflation on existing contracts,” the statement said.
The statement added that contractors and consultants will be left with no option but to evoke the necessary clauses in the contracts if government fails to honor the payments which will result in the suspension or termination of contracts.
The suspension or termination of the contracts will affect important national infrastructure projects such as the Link Zambia 8000 and Pave Zambia 2000, two major road projects meant to link various cities in the country.
The suspension or termination of the contracts will also result in many engineering and construction businesses closing up which will result in the loss of over 50,000 jobs in the construction industry as well as loss of government revenue.
“It will affect the general economy and the livelihood of hundreds of thousands of people. We are confident that the government will favorably address these matters before the situation worsens,” the statement said. Enditem