Dhaka south would procure a pricier jeep, an ambulance and freezers in a project intended to repair potholes and improve signs on the roads, officials said on Saturday.
The Dhaka South City Corporation (DSCC) has proposed Tk 15,500 for installing each of road signs like "no parking", "no horn", "school in front", "narrow/wide road", "hospital in front", "pedestrian crossing," etc.
Analysts have raised the question on the necessity of a luxury jeep, an ambulance and freezer vans for repairing potholes on the roads and upgrading signals in the city areas.
They have expressed their surprise at the proposal for purchasing sands, stones, colour, bitumen and parts and machinery for its existing vehicle repair from the development budget rather than from its own revenue.
The Planning Commission has also raised its reservation about the procurement of vehicles and road repair materials like sands, stones, bitumen, and colour, not relevant to the development work.
The DSCC has recently sought the approval for a Tk 483.40 billion "Procurement of vehicles and machinery for repairing potholes on different roads and upgrading traffic management project" from the commission.
It proposed to complete the work by June 2021.
The city corporation, however, proposed to buy three automatic pothole patcher machines and a road marking machine, which are relevant to the repair of potholes and road sign improvement.
According to the project proposal, the DSCC would spend about half of the total Tk 483.50 million for purchasing the three potholes patcher machines and a road marking machine.
While the rest of fund will be spent on buying a luxury jeep, an ambulance, three freezer vans, road repair materials, office stationary, machinery and parts for the existing vehicles, installing road signs, registration of new vehicles at the BRTA, and honorarium and food for the officials.
For example, along with registration fees, a luxury jeep will cost Tk 9.6 million, or 2.0 per cent of total project outlay.
The city authority will spend Tk 204 million on purchasing three automatic potholes patcher machines while Tk 168 million for procuring sands, stones, bitumen and thermoplastic colour.
It has sought spending of Tk 6.20 million for installing 400 road marking signs, meaning it will cost Tk 15,500 each for 10 roads across the Dhaka South metropolitan areas.
The city corporation will procure machinery and parts at Tk 60 million cost for repairing its existing bulldozer, excavator, milling machine, etc.
Furthermore, the corporation has sought Tk 0.60 million for paying honorarium, food, advertisement for tenders bills, and purchasing official stationary like paper, pens, ink, etc.
The DSCC has justified its proposal, saying since it has only one road marking machine and no automatic potholes patcher machine, so it need to procure those for better roads and traffic management inside the city.
Besides, they have only four ambulances and no freezer vans, which cerate problem for handling patients and dead bodies, it said.
No corporation official was immediately available for comments on the necessity for the purchase of jeep, construction materials, colour, parts and machinery.
A senior commission official said repairing roads and improving traffic system are its routine jobs. "So it has an annual expenditure fund from the revenue budget."
In addition, its proposal for purchasing an expensive jeep, an ambulance and freezer vans with its road repair work is questionable, the official added.