Rural road maintenance through labour-based lengthmen system in Zambia.
Rural road maintenance has received little or no attention in Zambia for a long time, resulting in an adverse impact on the economy. Meanwhile Road Authorities have continued to use traditional capital-intensive periodic and routine maintenance at the expense of scarce foreign exchange. The system has not performed well, hence the current state of roads. Labour-based methods for routine maintenance under the Lengthmen System used in Kenya, Lesotho and other developing countries in the Sub-Saharan Africa have proved to be technically and economically viable. In this report the author examines the desirability of using the Labour-Based Lengthmen System as an alternative to the existing capital -intensive methods in Zambia. This is done through rev iewing rural road maintenance in Zambia and then carrying out a comparative analysis of the same bctween Zambia, Kenya and Lesotho The comparative analysis shows that Zambia is not performing well when compared to Kenya and Lesotho. Meanwhile, the Lengthmen System is more desirable compared to other methods under the current economic conditions. Recommendations, based on the comparative analysis, have been given to improve rural road maintenance in Zambia.