October 4, 2017
The deteriorating roads within Addis Ababa are in urgent need of maintenance work, especially after the rainy season. The Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) has been working with the Addis Ababa City Roads Authority (AACRA) since 2015 to develop road maintenance system and capacity within AACRA. On October 04, 2017 JICA and AACRA held their fifth Joint Coordination Committee (JCC) meeting at AACRA to monitor the progress of the project.
The ‘Project for Development of Road Maintenance Capacity of Addis Ababa City' has been implemented to ensure that the roads in Addis Ababa would be maintained in a sustainable manner. In order to do that it is essential that the management capacity of AACRA with regards to road maintenance be enhanced. The JICA expert team assigned to AACRA has been reviewing the road maintenance implementation structure of the organization with various counterparts through discussions, interviews, surveys and site visits. Training sessions for AACRA staff have also been held in Japan and Addis Ababa with regards to: road maintenance, road inspections, maintenance planning and developing maintenance management systems.
The desired outputs at the completion of the project in 2018 are: improved road maintenance implementation structures within AACRA; the establishment of processes for formulating road maintenance plans and improved maintenance skills and knowledge of AACRA technical staff.
During the JCC meeting, the general manager of AACRA, Mr. Habtamu Tegegne urged his staff to take the time to learn from the Japanese experts allocated to AACRA to develop their technical skills. He also expressed concern that more should be done to ensure that the transfer of skills and knowledge is done properly in order to guarantee the success and longevity of AACRA and its activities after the departure of the experts.
Senior JICA Representative, Takeshi Matsuyama, responded by explaining that "the only way to maintain sustainability is by customizing the trainings and the models provided by Japanese experts to fit the needs of Addis Ababa city. He added that simply following the Japanese way of doing things will not necessarily guarantee success since Japan is a different phase of the development era. "You have to internalize trainings and techniques to the Ethiopian context for them to be sustainable. We will give you the equipment and training, but it is up to the Ethiopians to decide whether it is useful and applicable for a specific situation", he added.
Caption: In the past two years AACRA has transitioned from using physical maps to identify road routes and conditions to digital maps using AutoCAD.