The factors affecting management and maintenance of gravel roads in rural Uganda: A case of Rakai District
Sebudde, Harold Aranr
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Many roads whose lifespan would have been prolonged through maintenance are left to deteriorate to levels that would require major rehabilitation to make them motor able. In light of this, this study sought to analyze the factors affecting the management and maintenance of gravel roads in rural areas in Uganda. The study set out to investigate the current state of gravel roads in Rakai District, the factors affecting the effective management of unpaved or gravel roads in Rakai and in turn establish possible mechanisms and strategies to improve the maintenance of gravel roads in rural local governments. The Study was carried out through observation of hands-on road works of Periodic and Routine maintenance nature of rural gravel roads and acquisition of first hand information through interviews and development of data collection tools to acquire information from the technical people especially Civil Engineers, political leaders and rural road users in seeking their personal opinions on the quality of road works, resource utilization and budgets and maintenance of gravel roads. Existing information about the recommendable and sustainable approach to the maintenance of Gravel roads was also researched and reviewed. The major findings indicated that Gravel roads within the district are not in recommendable or desirable state to warrant ease of mobility or serve their intended purpose satisfactorily. Secondly, that effective management of unpaved roads required immense positive intervention in human resource capacity, financial and non financial resources capacity as well as change in policy and environment factors within the district so as to realize better practices in gravel road maintenance. In conclusion, among the better practices to be engaged to curb on the raised maintenance issues was improved technical capacity building, earmarking and prioritization of funds to target maintenance solely, road designing and surveys to precede all road works contracts, more strict adherence to set controls, improved surface compaction to avoid quick deterioration and use of more recommendable personnel expertise for road works contractors.