Business Management Department, BAISAGO University, Private Bag BR 94, Gaborone, Botswana.
Charlse Mazhazhate (CMILT) KMI Logistics
Mujakachi Tapiwa Christopher (CMILT) The Chartered Institute of Transport and Logistics Zimbabwe
The main aim of the research project is to find the contribution of road transport infrastructure to the economy looking at the developments, the people and sectors driving the economy like transport companies. It looks at the objectives of the research that are inclusive of the factors mitigating against the enhancement and development of road transport infrastructure in Botswana. The need for improved and developed road transport infrastructure and systems have made the existing road transport infrastructure inadequate due to increase in population and improvements in developments. This research was designed to collect data through questionnaires from 30 road users and 10 employees from 2 companies. The data is tabulated and presented in pie charts and bar charts. It was designed to find answers that align with the research objectives. The major findings from both the questionnaires is that, most contributing factors to lack of road transport developments is poor quality roads with 80% of road users indicting that the government can build more roads through sourcing funds. With the current existing road transport infrastructure, the companies indicated that there are some challenges that hinders business growth such as road accidents, loss of goods due to accidents and lastly which 50% of the respondents indicted as the main challenge is delay in delivery of goods. This research also has recommendations to the government and management within companies to help address the challenges and factors mentioned by respondents.
Key words: Road traffic accident, Casualty, Traffic safety, Botswana, Drunken driving, Systems approach
1. BACKROUND OF STUDY
Botswana is a landlocked country and this means its geographical location allows interconnection with neighbouring countries such as South Africa and Namibia. For this reason, the country’s road transport infrastructure facilitate as a centre link between neighbouring countries. (The Republic of Botswana-Government Portal,2011) stipulate that after independence, the government of Botswana formed Roads Department under the Ministry of Works and Transport to construct and provide road links between towns, cities and neighbouring countries. It further states that the Roads Department constructed the engineered paved road network and its further jurisdiction consists of 6116 Km of paved and 2800 Km of unpaved roads. The Roads Department was set forth to plan, construct and maintain roads in line with the Public Roads Act.
Road transportation has been one of the most used mode of transportation in Botswana, this is because most surface is covered by roads and less rails hence Cross Boarder Road Transport Agency, (2018), explains that road transport covers about 93% of the total volume of passenger transportation and the railway line from South to North together with air transport covers the remaining 7% of passenger travel. This indicates that a lot of Botswana’s transport investments are cantered around road transport infrastructure and because it was frequently used for mining, cargo and private business industries. The agency is also of opinion that over the past four decades, Botswana achieved great economic performance which created vast opportunities such as diamond and coal mining, logistics sector, agriculture sector and tourism. Botswana began improving on road transport systems as Mining sector registered high production on main exports hence allowing for substantial foreign reserves and investment thus maintaining high economic growth. With years, the condition of roads infrastructures became unsafe to use following failures by the Road Departments to make improvements.
According to Mokwena (2017), the government has been appealing for funds particularly for the development of road infrastructure projects in Gaborone that has been pending for years. Due to lack of capacity by the country to undertake projects, it has been difficult to acquire loans from international stakeholders. Botswana has been lacking effective project planning, training and implementation skills. Factors such as corruption, ineffective planning and sometimes the government having to spend a lot of money to hire project managers has been a drag in furthering improvements. This brought up questions of how significant improvements in road transport infrastructure is in Botswana’s economy and what could be done to ensure the country improves on its shortcomings.
- STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
According to Garmendia & Pushak (2011), Botswana comes a long way in 1966 with a railway that ran through the country and tarred roads covering only 12 kilometres of the entire country than it does today. This being the case, most the economic developments were centred on improving the lives of Batswana with no motive to improve the road transport system. Since independence, a lot has changed including the construction of main roads that links towns and provide international links for economic activities such as mining, agriculture and tourism. However, with years, little has been achieved and this has shown a declining trend in road infrastructure sectors which has been of a concern. Botswana’s economic stability has been interrupted by a need for effective road infrastructure such as bridges, major roads and railways. Anyango, (2014) explains that possible barriers including congestion, weak urban and rural planning, corruption, ineffective government and financial constraints have hindered the standards of living of citizens and deferred economic growth.
Poor road transport infrastructure is considered one of the main impediments in Botswana’s economic development and also on improving the quality of lives of Batswana. This raises questions which answers can be presumed that the government is not fully committed to road development projects, this being that Botswana did not achieve aspiration of vision 2016. Many proposals and plans have been set forth for the new vision 2036 but fear is that it might fail like vision 2016.It can be speculated that minimal efforts are being implemented and promises are being ignored. Failures as identified by Keorapetse, (2016) has been that “It may be hard to achieve vision 2036 because it is the same government, same system, same people and same dishonesties”.
Therefore, the aim of this research is to find out if indeed the government is not fully committed or if it is due to any other factors, hence the research aims to ‘investigate’.
- RESEARCH OBJECTIVES
1. To examine how the existing road networks infrastructure in Botswana have contributed to the economic growth of the country.
2. To access how poor road transport infrastructure has implicated Botswana’s economic development.
3. To make recommendations on how Botswana can improve on road transport infrastructure and development.
4. To investigate factors militating against the enhancement and development of road transport infrastructure in Botswana.
This chapter looks at findings from past researchers who have undertaken the same element of road transport infrastructure and it further seek to increase knowledge by in depth assessment of other scholars work. In this chapter, we will look at how the already existing road networks have contributed to the economic development of Botswana, by assessing contributions they have made. The focal point of this chapter will also be to stipulate impacts that road transport infrastructure challenges play in the state’s industry, trade and supply of income such that quality of life is improved.
It will also look at factors that mitigate against the development of Botswana’s road transport infrastructure, various challenges by other countries facing the same problems. The transport planning processes and maintenances by the government are also assessed in this chapter to address the research problem and research objectives.
2.2 CONTRIBUTIONS OF EXISTING ROAD NETWORKS INFRASTRUCTURE TO BOTSWANA’S ECONOMIC GROWTH
Cambridge dictionaries online, (2020) defines infrastructure as “the basic systems and services such as transport and power supplies that a country or organisation uses in order to work effectively”. According to Garmendia & Pushak, (2011), Botswana has a good road network with rail being the second highest in Saharan Africa after Gabon. Due to economic boom, the country gave priority to developing road networks through allocating resources to government road departments to make expansions to the existing networks. Among the other countries in southern Africa, the country recorded a strong record of road network expansion coming in second to South Africa and Mauritius.
Road infrastructure is important in every country as it facilitates moving people and goods from one location to other and in this case it is a derived demand .Road transport infrastructure helps industry businesses to transport raw materials, finished goods and semi-finished goods for sales purposes hence some businesses are involved in providing transportation services. (Ivanova & Masarova, 2013). As explained by the Statistics Botswana, (2016) total network roads in Botswana measured 31 746.7km of which the central government and local authorities maintained 58.3% and 41.7% respectively. With this being said, roads maintained by the central government were still at 18,507km between 2013 and 2017. The figure1 below as indicated by Botswana Statistics highlights the total road network in 2017.
FIGURE 1: TOTAL ROAD NETWORK (PERCENT) 2017
Source: Statistics Botswana, (2016) Botswana Transport & Infrastructure, Statistics report 2015
In the same year, the construction of Charles Hill- Ncojane road allowed for an increase in the percentage of bitumen roads by 0.4% and a decrease in gravel roads by 0.4% as it was built from a gravel road. This is an indication that Botswana’s transport infrastructure like road networks have been expanding which has been facilitating economic growth. Botswana Statistics also further explains that transport infrastructure has an economic impact as it results in economic benefits such as trade facilitation, increased productivity, economics of scale and job creation. Transport investments allows for reduction in overall states costs of continuous maintaining road networks hence leading to more production and integrating rural areas to urban areas.
Ministry of Transport New Zealand, (2014) is of opinion that road transport infrastructure contributions can be assessed into many different criteria from effects on aggregate economic welfare to the gross domestic product (GDP) contributions and service supply. Transport and economic development have a connection that highlights the relationship between the two such that investments in transport like infrastructure can have multiple economic impacts. This is why many countries choose to invest on transport infrastructure for the development of the economy with business and industry element being the main influence.
By using the figure below, Rodrigue, (2020) is highlighting the key relationship between transport investments and economic development that with improved transport infrastructure investment results transport improvements. Transport improvements influenced by capacity, efficiency and reliability have an impact on the labour and commodity markets of businesses and industries therefore factors such as resources, parts, customers and labour are more accessible to increase production in businesses. Transport improvements leads to expansion of output that makes markets of existing firms within a country more effective and competitive with both local and mostly international markets. This leads to expansion of employment within the economy of a nation as a result there are improvements in the standards of living of citizens. It can also increase growth in local markets therefore attracting investors at locations of improved accessibility. Increased labour and commodity market competitiveness allows for a country’s economy to be sufficient and independent with growth in income volumes hence continuous.
FIGURE 2 ( RODRIGUE, 2020) TRANSPORT IMPACTS ON ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITIES
Source: Rodrigue, J. P. (2020). The geography of transport systems (5th ed). New York, USA: Routledge.
Agbigbe, (2016) studied that transport infrastructure investment has contributed in many number of ways to the economic growth of a country. One of the ways is improvements in GDP per capita income from productivity levels in private sectors. This being the case, many of the citizens get employed by private sector businesses hence being able to generate employment. He further explained that road transport infrastructure has influenced the movement of goods and people across vast distances and the effective timely arrival of materials and products at all stages of production. This has allowed for increased accessibility and productivity of goods that can be purchased hence productivity generates jobs.
Otu & Henry, (2015) studied that transport infrastructure has a continuous impact on the economic development therefore there is a strong and positive relationship between transport infrastructure and aggregate productivity. Road transport per capital spending allows for strong outcomes as the economy is able to make efficient use of its input and hence increases on productivity levels. Adding to this, Skorobogatova & Merlino, (2017) studied that transport infrastructure has a good impact on the macroeconomic level of productivity and it allows for goods to be moved to markets for domestic and international trade hence significant in keeping the industrialization of a nation smoothly operating and GDP/capita continuously improving.
FIGURE 3 BOTSWANA GDP FROM TRANSPORT AND COMMUNICATIONS
Source: TradingEconomics.com (2019). Central Statistics Office, Botswana
Trading Economics, (2019) indicates (figure3) that the Botswana’s transport and communications sector contributed an increase to 1620.70 BWP million in the third quarter of 2019 from 1565BWP million in the second quarter of 2019. Although it is showing a downward trend in January 2019 from 1554.4 BWP million it increased in July 2019.This shows that transportation has been contributing significantly to the economic development of Botswana.
Road transport infrastructure is linked with the economic growth because it allows for the provision of high mobility of people, goods and services. Developments such as weigh bridges and highways facilitates both domestics and international trade by reducing transportation costs and time while increasing economic returns. There is a clear relationship between road transport infrastructure and economic expansion as countries with greater road network capacity have sustainable improvements in industry output, national gross domestic product and export growth. (Ng, Law, Jakarni & Subramaniam, 2019).
High export rates in this case increases because of the volume of accessibility of goods and services. Gigu, Agheorghiesei, Vatamanu and Toader, (2018) studied that the economy of a country benefit significantly from an investment in transport infrastructure especially in congested areas like urban areas, therefore investment in transport infrastructure results increased markets for distribution of goods and services within a country. Transport infrastructure allows for economies of scale because a nation is unable to produce goods and services and export them through international trading whilst saving time and reducing business costs. They also studied that transport infrastructure gaps are tailored towards involving and connecting lower income groups and expand government opportunities for the beneficial of all the citizens within a country. In addition to this, transport infrastructure allows for economic improvements in exporting markets where a country is able to produce high volume of quality products that can be sold to other country therefore increasing employment and per capita income.
Mmegi Online, (2019) elaborate points that were addressed at the state of the national address in 2019 that stipulated a growth in the domestic economy of Botswana. Amongst the contributing industries is transport and communication which as addressed by President Mr Mokgweetsi Masisi explained that the growth prospects of the domestic economy has been of impressive results with an increase of 4.5 percent in 2018, following a growth of 2.9 percent recorded in 2019. This indicates an increase in productivity in business and other industries that are aided by the development of transport and communications.
On the economic growth prospects of Southern and Eastern Mediterranean countries, the improvements in GDP and trade according to Carruthers, (2013) is as a results of investments in transport infrastructure. Carruthers indicates that transport investment contributes by accounts between 6% and 10% on gross investments, government investments and domestic production and consumption of goods and services. He further explains that an increase on domestic production increases international trade levels within a country. Provision of transport infrastructure has more direct economic and social impacts of a country from mobility of people and goods to increased productivity, increased market labour and capita per income.
2.3 IMPACTS OF POOR ROAD TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE TO BOTSWANA’S ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT
FIGURE 4 THE ROAD NETWORK IN BOTSWANA
Source: Economies Africaines, (2017) the road network in Botswana
The figure (4) above as indicated by Economies Africaines, (2017) explains that most of Botswana’s road network is concentrated to the eastern part of the country to meet demographic needs. The road network within the country is reinforced by the lack of water bodies within the country and this compiles Botswana to share ports with its neighbouring countries. Economies Africaines further elaborate that the rest of the road network in Botswana is poorly supplied and more roads are being extended than building of new ones which constructing them requires huge amount of funding. They also explain that due to negligence of the country, the roads remain undeveloped. A reliable road network connecting Botswana through other countries like South Africa could facilitate regional integration and international trade.
Naazie, Braimah & Atindana, (2018) studied that roads conditions makes it difficult for movement of people and goods from one location to the other. Roads are often poor with potholes which makes it a challenge to convey goods to and from markets and for businesses to transport their produce. They explain that more of the road infrastructures in villages are poor and some villagers are out of reach especially in rainy seasons that leaves roads completely eroded. Transport infrastructure plays a vital role in the economic performance of a country whereas poor road transport infrastructure hinders the movement of people and goods, particularly freight cargo for industrial businesses. Furthermore, they elaborate that poor road transport infrastructure affects urban areas where most of productivity and movement of goods takes place. Goods cannot be moved well in time and it is not safe to convey goods in such poor roads conditions. Hence productivity levels are reduced and as well as the aggregate productivity of the economy. They also explain that economic activities cannot take place without effective transport systems hence deficits in the capacity, reliability and provision of such systems could result in economic costs and lower quality of life.
Raballand, Macchi & Petracco, (2010) represents with the figure 5 below how poor road transport infrastructure has affected economic growth particularly in rural areas. This is because there are ever increasing transport development demands with less efforts on investments as compared to urban areas. It becomes a transport burden for residents to access transport services that are needed to aid mobility of people and goods from one place to another. People are not able to meet their social demands or access social welfare. It is difficult to facilitate rural and economic development since improvements in provision of road infrastructure such as bridges and roads allows for easy market access, provision and distribution of goods and reduction in transport costs. Road transport investments in rural areas are slow and often restricted for usage by the population leading to inadequate income generation and overall poverty. With this being the case, this leads to shortfall in foreign direct investment and the nation’s income levels.
FIGURE 5 THE TRANSPORT TRAP IN RURAL AREAS
Source: Raballand, G., P. Macchi, and C. Petracco. (2010). Rural Road Investment Efficiency. Lessons from Burkina Faso, Cameroon and Uganda, Directions in Development, Infrastructure, the World Bank, Washington DC.
As indicted by Ramaphane, (2018), the Member of Parliament for Nata-Gweta explained that the conditions of Botswana’s roads are poor and needs attention. The member of parliament Mr Majaga stipulated how changes are going to be made going forward due to the fact that roads conditions have hindered the economic growth hence, affecting the expansion and development of other economic sectors such as trade and tourism. The economy of Botswana therefore intend to develop and nourish other sectors such as tourism and not put too much dependence on the mining sector therefore the need for effective transport systems.
Ineffective and inadequate road transport infrastructure cuts down on the level of production and economic growth depends on the level of production. The level of production depends on the accessibility of good transport infrastructure. Failure to implement good road transport systems allows for failure in diversifying production and eventually expansion in trade. Poor transport systems deter production levels because businesses and industries would be forced to spend more on transporting and accessing goods. (Siyan, Rita and Edith, 2015).
Sarkar, Maitri & Joshi, (2015) when analysing transportation problems and issues in Indian cities stipulated that because of rapid population growth and urbanisation, there has been serious problems in developing transport infrastructures. They further highlight that due to the big the big margin difference between the wealthy and the poor, there have been a problem of low per capita income and frequent government urge to spend increasingly amount of money on developing transport facilities. Mentoring factors such as unplanned transport infrastructure development and limited land of roads extension there have been more neglected problems in Indian cities that have contributed to the growth disparity between the rich and the poor as well as the country’s per capital income.
- FACTORS MITIGATING AGAINST DEVELOPMENT OF ROAD TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE
Transport plays an important role in the sustainable social and economic development of a country. Countries with a good investment in transportation and road network systems have seen a good increase in national income and economic expansion. Adding more to this, United Nations Economic Commissions for Europe, (2015) also indicates that transport sector has been observed to have a direct value to global GDP of about 3-5 percent and about a contribution of 5-8 percent on the average national total paid employment.
Sunday Standard, (2013) indicates that the Transport expert, Mr Gobusamang Keebine explained that Botswana needs a sustainable transport strategy especially because transport is a big influencer in the effective cross boarder trading of mineral production and importation of mining machinery. He further explained that since Botswana is a landlocked country it would continue to suffer transportation issues related to the freight and passenger traffic. Factors such as time and costs of delivering goods would be a long life problem if the government does not involve private sectors to plan and acquire relevant equipment to facilitate the mining industry. Lack of implementation of effective transportation strategies is therefore a concern since the country lacks organisational capacity by the Botswana Road Freight Association.
With the aim to try to improve the road transport infrastructure particularly in the Gaborone areas, progress on road projects have been a challenge because of lack of funds as Botswana is failing to produce the required results for the World Bank’s funded road infrastructure projects. This being said by minister of transport and communications, Kitso Mokaila, have made road infrastructure improvements in Gaborone very slow. The lack of capacity by the ministry have made it difficult to undertake some projects and with this being said, the requirements of the World Bank funding are that a country must be having the capacity especially project management to undertake the projects. This can be concluded that the poor and slow developments in Botswana area also due to lack of capacity building and training. (Mokwena, 2017).
According to Kgautlhe, (2017), a coordinated transport system in the Southern African Development Committee (SADC) region is important in the economic development and in improving regional intra trade. This being said by the South Africa Cross Boarder Road Transport Agency senior research specialist on corridor assessment and strategic analysis, Mr Crynos Mutendere that Africa was lagging behind in terms of poor road transport infrastructure and it has been observed that it was because of lack of construction of a well-coordinated transport system that would link all SADC region countries and allow them to trade amongst themselves and even improve on gross domestic product level. This being the problem, the strategic implementation of a smooth transport system would improve both freight and passenger tariff.
One of the most revealed factor making it difficult to make improvements as explained by Setboonsarng, (2005) is lack of effective maintenance systems. Countries spend money on constructing transport infrastructure but end up failing to make necessary maintenance and in this case of roads. Lack of investments in road transport infrastructure causes people within a country to suffer and find it difficult to access opportunities because mobility is affected and it also raises high expenditure issues where the country has to invest large amount of money than it would have if there were proper maintenances.
New Zealand, Ministry of Transport. (2016, May) elaborates that funding the transport systems in the long run is one of the factors or challenges affecting overall economic growth. This being said, understanding how much to invest in transport systems and how to fund the investments has been a challenge for both developing and developed countries. The reason being a lot of forecast are from different factors such as the growth prospects in population especially urban areas, the continuous rising costs of construction and maintenance of transport systems and infrastructure and the increasing demand for the need of effective transport infrastructure. The government’s decision on how much to invest on transport infrastructure has a long term impact on the economic development of a country, future of cities and towns, industries expansion, efficiency of firms in supply chain and improved domestic and international trade. This challenges have made it difficult for countries to effectively make demand forecasts and improve on managing transport investments costs.
This chapter looks at approaches and designs used to collect and assemble data that is useful in addressing the research topic and objectives. The main aim of this chapter is to outline the research process by configuring methodologies used to gather data from a number of target population and it entails profiling research instruments, designs, approach, sample size and procedure, methodologies, data collection techniques, target population and ethical considerations.
3.2 RESEARCH METHODOLOGY
This research will set forth on quantitative method because it is objective in collecting data such as opinions, attitudes and behaviours through surveys methods such as paper surveys and interviews. It is also used for collecting data from sample population within Gaborone and enumerating it into measurable statistics analysed to conclude facts. The study is without bias as it focuses on finding answers to the objectives.
- RESEARCH DESIGN
For this research, the descriptive design is best suited because it describes the nature of what could be the role of road transport infrastructure on economic development by outlining and characterising the importance of road transport infrastructure. Descriptive design also uses quantitative method to collect data to be used for statistical analysis of the large sample size population within Gaborone. When collecting data, this method allows the researcher to use the questionnaire or survey method to get data from the population and hence it is easy to make decisions on the basis of statistical data analysis.
- POPULATION OF STUDY
Banerjee and Chaudhury, (2010) explain population of study as an entire group of people of which information regarding a topic of study is required to be ascertained. In this case, the population identified in this study is private and public vehicle drivers, pedestrians and two business companies involved in transporting goods (transport services) as all these parties are directly affected by the problem at hand. The population of study is limited to Gaborone only because it is where the research problem is being investigated and it is easily accessible.
- SAMPLING PROCEDURE
Therefore the sampling technique used in this study is simple random sampling method under probability technique. Mohsin, (2016) explains simple random sampling as a type of probability sampling method which everything in the population has an equal chance of being included in a study and the selected population has the same kind of characteristics.
A sample is selected from the population in Gaborone and expressed into numbering by sampling the number of private and public vehicle users, pedestrians and workers within two transport business companies in order to perform the study on the sample. The population is defined and expressed into the sampling frame and number of business companies, private and public vehicle owners and pedestrians being the representation of the whole population. The expressed number of the population is going to be drawn at random to determine the sample size. The data collection is measured by allowing all the sample frame an equal chance of taking part or being selected in a study.
|Private vehicle owners||10|
|Public vehicle owners||10|
|Transport service provider company A||5|
|Transport service provider company B||5|
Kabir, (2016) elaborate that data collection instruments include observation, questionnaire, interviews, survey and focus group discussion. This research uses questionnaire method of data collection .Questionnaires uses open questions which allow respondents to express their feelings and answer in details and also closed questions which are straight forward and standardized allowing for easy interpretation of data from a large number of respondents
4.1 DATA PRESENTATION, ANALYSIS AND DISCUSSION
This chapter overviews data presentation and analysis from questionnaire survey that was distributed in Gaborone. It explains the findings and discusses interpretations from all the questions attempted and given to respondents. The questionnaire was looking at gathering information from road users and transport companies in order to answer to the research objectives of this study. The respondents were asked to answer the questions at their best of knowledge to ensure validity and reliability. A total of 40 respondents were selected at random to answer the questionnaires, these were 30 road users public vehicle owners, 10 private vehicle owners and 10 pedestrians, which all three categories fall under road users and 10 transport companies in Gaborone.
- RESPONSE RATE (ROAD USERS QUESTIONNAIRES)
A total of 30 questionnaires were distributed to road users including 10 private vehicle owners, 10 public vehicle owners and 10 pedestrians in Gaborone and all 30 were attempted and returned with a 100% response rate. The following table represents this information for each category of road user and response rate.
TABLE 4.1: RESPONSE RATE
|ROAD USERS||QUESTIONNAIRES DISTRIBUTED||QUESTIONNAIRES RESPONDEND||RESPONSE RATE|
|Private vehicle owners||10||10||100%|
|Public vehicle owners||10||10||100%|
SOURCE: PRIMARY DATA
- RESPONDENTS PERSONAL INFORMATION
The questionnaire was set to collect data from both genders and hence both males and females responded filled the questionnaires. From all the 30 respondents, the outcome was 18 were males and 12 were females. 60% males and 40% females. This is presented in figure 4.2.1 below.
TABLE 4.2.1 GENDER
FIGURE 4.2.1 GENDER
3.4 TYPE OF ROAD USERS
The objective of the questionnaires was to establish the types of road users that use transport infrastructure in Gaborone in category of public, private vehicle owners and pedestrians. Public vehicle owners contributed 40%, Private vehicle owners contributed 40% and pedestrians contributed 20% of the research findings. This indicated that a large segment from the sample respondents was influenced by private and public vehicle owners than pedestrians, which indicated a lower percentage. The pie chart below shows the types of road users and percentages.
TABLE 4.3 TYPES OF ROAD USERS
|TYPE OF ROAD USER||FREQUENCY|
|Public vehicle Owner||12|
|Private vehicle owner||12|
FIGURE 4.3 TYPES OF ROAD USERS
4.4 DAILY USE OR ACCESS TO ROAD TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE
To be able to analyse and evaluate the road infrastructure usage or accessibility, it was accurate to determine the average daily usage times per respondents. From the respondents, 80% access road transport infrastructure 1-3 times daily, none of the respondents access them 4-7 and 12+times daily and 20% fall under 8-11 times daily. From the sample, it shows that most of the road users in Gaborone uses road transport infrastructure 1-3 times on an average daily basis. The pie chart below demonstrate this information.
TABLE 4.4 ACCESSIBILTY/USE
FIGURE 4.4 ACCESSIBILITY/USE
4.5 SECTION B
The questionnaires contained both open and closed ended questionnaires in which section B required participants to answer the first few questions with either agreeing or disagreeing statements ranging from strongly agree to strongly disagree. This is followed by a series of open ended questions to allow respondents to express themselves and by answering in their own opinions.
4.5.1 DO EXISTING ROAD TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE IN GABORONE PROVIDE YOU WITH SAFETY AND EFFECTIVE MOBILITY?
The pie chart below demonstrates that from the research findings, none of the respondents either strongly agree or strongly disagree with road transport infrastructure providing safety and effective mobility. 20% of the respondents agree to this statement and 80% disagrees. A perception can be made that more of the respondents are against road transport infrastructure providing safety and effective mobility. It is safe to say the road transport infrastructure are far from providing the needs the society desire
TABLE 4.5.1 SAFETY AND MOBILITY
FIGURE 4.5.1 SAFETY AND EFFECTIVE MOBILITY
4.5.2 TO THE BEST OF YOUR KNOWLEDGE DOES THE STATE AND CONDITIONS OF ROAD TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE IN GABORONE INDICATE EFFECTIVE DEVELOPMENT WITHIN THE CITY?
From the perception of the findings, most respondents agreed to road transport infrastructure in Gaborone influencing development. The pie chart below shows that 60%, which is the highest number of respondents agrees, 40% disagrees and neither respondents strongly agrees or strongly disagrees. This can be concluded that on overall basis, most of the road users agrees that indeed the state of the road transport infrastructure in Gaborone influences developments within the city.
TABLE 4.5.2 INFLUENCE ON DEVELOPMENT
FIGURE 4.5.2 INFLUENCE ON DEVELOPMENT
4.5.3 DOES THE MAINTENANCE IN ROAD TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE AFFECT THE DAILY LIVES OF RESIDENTS AND PRODUCTIVITY IN GABORONE?
Represented by the pie chart below, most of the respondents or participants are of a perspective that they are at the same level which is also the highest level of agreeing and disagreeing to road transport infrastructure maintenance affecting the lives of residents and productivity. 20% of the participants strongly agree, 40% agrees, another 40% disagrees and none of the respondents strongly disagree. The impression is that the same number of the two highest percentage agrees and also disagrees and all of the participants do not strongly disagree on this.
TABLE 4.5.3 MAINTENANCE OF ROAD TRANSPORT INFRSTERUCTURE
FIGURE 4.5.3 MAINTENANCE OF ROAD TRANSPORT INFRSTERUCTURE
4.5.4 ARE THERE ANY KNOWN CONTRIBUTING FACTORS TO THE DEFICIENT ROAD TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE AFFECTING THE ECONOMIC GROWTH? IF YES, WHAT ARE THOSE FACTORS?
From the respondents’ view 20% of them have indicated that there are no known factors that contributes to deficit road transport infrastructure. Another 20% indicated that small roads that are poorly constructed to hold more capacity of vehicles are the factors. An additional 20% is of a view that narrow roads and potholes are the known factors while a higher percentage of 40% of the respondents indicated that insufficient road infrastructure and too much cars on the roads that cannot be meet by the existing capacity of the roads infrastructure are the major contributing factors. It is overall safe to say insufficient road transport infrastructure and more cars on the roads are the major shortfalls to the low quality of road transport infrastructure. The bar graph below represents this information.
FIGURE 4.5.4 CONTRIBUTING FACTORS
4.5.5 ARE YOU CONTENT WITH THE CONDITIONS OF ROAD TRNASPORT INFRASTRICTURE? IF NOT HOW SHOULD THE GOVERNMENT IMPROVE ON THE CURRENT STATE?
All respondents have indicated that they are not content with the road transport infrastructure in Gaborone. Therefore, 20% of the respondents indicated that the government should reserve funds to build impose the road transport infrastructure for convenient and quicker transportation. Another 20% desired that the government make bigger roads to reflect the capacity of the population in Gaborone. Most of the respondents that is 60% stipulated that the government should build roads such as fly overs in cities as there is not enough space on the ground. Altogether the sensation is that the government should build larger or bigger roads by making funds reservations through all means of acquiring loans. The bar chart below represents this information.
FIGURE 4.5.5 GOVERNMNET IMPROVEMENTS STRATEGIES
4.5. 6. DO YOU KNOW ANY CHALLENGES FACED BY ROAD USERS WITH REGARD TO THE CONDITION OF ROAD TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE IN GABORONE?
All respondents stipulated challenges they know and 40% indicated that tragic congestion which results in road users arriving late to the respective areas. 40% show that accidents caused by traffic congestion and traffic jams are the challenges. 20% of the respondents are of a view that poor roads destroys cars and slows down the movement of cars causing air pollution. This question was significant in finding different views from the sample of the challenges that is brought up by the conditions in Botswana and in this context to look at these challenges when coming up with solutions. This is represented in a bar graph below.
FIGURE 4.5.6 CHALLENGES
4.5.7 DO YOU HAVE ANY RECOMMENDATIONS THAT THE GOVERNMENT OF BOTSWANA SHOULD CONSIDER TO IMPROVE ON THE CONDITIONS OF ROAD TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE?
It was significant to get respondents’ views on suggestions on how the government can improve the conditions of road transport infrastructure. From the research findings, 60 % of the respondents suggested that the government should expand and build bigger roads to fasten developments and help reduce traffic congestion and road infrastructure related issues. 20% of the respondents’ advices the government to hire local construction companies to hurry road developments. The other 20% indicated that the government can source money from other governments to maintain damaged roads and build larger roads that match the capacity of the population. The bar chart below represents this information.
FIGURE 4.5.7 RECOMMENDATIONS
4.6 RESPONSE RATE (TRANSPORT COMPANIES)
A total of 10 questionnaires were distributed to 2 transport companies including 5 were to one company and the other 5 to another company and all 10 were attempted and returned with a 100% response rate. The following table represents this information for each category of the two companies and response rate.
TABLE 4.6: RESPONSE RATE (TRANSPORT COMPANIES)
|TRANSPORT COMPANIES||QUESTIONNAIRES DISTRIBUTED||QUESTIONNAIRES RESPONDEND||RESPONSE RATE|
|Transport Company 1||5||5||100%|
|Transport Company 2||5||5||100%|
SOURCE: PRIMARY DATA
- RESPONDENTS PERSONAL INFORMATION
From the research findings of the two companies, the 50% are males and the other 50% are females. Both gender were included in the research questionnaires. This can be concluded that an equal percentage of both genders participated in the questionnaires. There were 5 males and 5 females from the 10 respondents or from both 2 companies. The pie chart below represents this information.
TABLE 4.7.1 GENDER
FIGURE 4.7.1 GENDER
4.7.2 HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN EMPLOYED BY THE COMPANY YOU WORK FOR?
This question was about finding out the duration of employment for each participants on the category of less than 5 years, 5-10 years, 10-15 years and more than 15 years. The findings of the research indicate that 40% of the respondents have been employed or working for the company for less than 5 years, 20% for 5-10 years, Another 20 % for 10-15 years and the remaining 20% for more than 15 years. Most of the respondents that participated have been employed for less than 5 years in both transport companies. The pie chart below demonstrates this information.
TABLE 4.7.2 EMPLOYEE WORK PERIOD
|Less than 5 years||4|
|More than 15 years||2|
FIGURE 4.7.2 EMPLOYEE WORK PERIOD
4.7.3 WHAT IS YOUR POSITION IN THE COMPANY?
This question was to analyse the positions of the employees taking part in the questionnaire from each company and from the findings, 40% of the participants are managers, 20% are operations officers, Customs officers are 20% of the sample and drivers are another 20%. None of the respondents fall on the other category. The aim of the research was to get views from all the employees in any position within both companies. The different positions in a company the more varying ideas or opinion and hence this increases the credibility of the research. This information is demonstrated in a pie chart below.
TABLE 4.7.3 EMPLOYEE POSITION
FIGURE 4.7.3 EMPLOYEE POSITION
4.8 SECTION B
The questionnaires contained section B which required participants to answer the first few questions with either agreeing or disagreeing statements ranging from strongly agree to strongly disagree. This is followed by a series of open ended questions to allow respondents to express themselves and by answering with their own opinions.
4.8.1 DO EXISTING ROAD TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE IN GABORONE PROVIDE YOU WITH SAFETY AND EFFECTIVE MOBILITY OF GOODS FROM ONE PLACE TO THE OTHER?
Looking at the respondent’s view most of them disagrees that road transport infrastructure provides the companies with safety and effective transportation of goods. This is indicated by the highest percentage of 60% from the sample as compared to the others. None of the respondents strongly agrees to this question but 20% of them as equal to the other 20% agrees and strongly disagrees. It is safe to say that the road networks infrastructures in Gaborone hinders safety and effective transportation of goods and is a major problem in these companies. This information is represented in a pie chart below.
TABLE 4.8.1 SAFETY AND MOBILITY
FIGURE 4.8.1 SAFETY AND EFFECTIVE MOBILITY
4.8.2 TO THE BEST OF YOUR KNOWLEDGE DOES THE STATE AND CONDITIONS OF ROAD TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE IN GABORONE FACILITATE EFFECTIVE DEVELOPMENT WITHIN THE CITY?
The pie chart below demonstrates that 60% which the highest number of respondents stipulated that they agree to this question. This is followed by 40% of the other ones that disagree to this question. Neither respondents strongly agrees or strongly disagrees to this as there is no one of them who indicated. Therefore most of the respondents believe that the state and conditions of road transport infrastructure facilitates effective development within Gaborone.
TABLE 4.8.2 EFFECTIVE DEVELOPMENT
FIGURE 4.8.2 EFFECTIVE DEVELOPMENT
4.8.3 DOES THE MAINTENANCE AND IMPROVEMENTS IN ROAD TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE AFFECT THE PRODUCTIVITY OF THE COMPANY IN TERMS OF EFFECTIVE, RELIABLE SERVICE AND SAFETY OF DRIVERS?
The pie chart below shows information from the research findings from participants. 80% of the participants expressed that they agree to that improvements in road transport infrastructure affects productivity of the company. 20% of the respondents strongly agree to this question. And none of the respondents disagree or strongly disagree.
TABLE 4.8.3 PRODUCTIVITY
FIGURE 4.8.3 PRODUCTIVITY WITHIN THE COMPANY
4.8.4 ARE THERE ANY KNOWN CONTRIBUTING FACTORS TO THE DEFICIENT ROAD TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE AFFECTING THE GROWTH OF YOUR COMPANY? IF YES, WHAT ARE THOSE FACTORS?
The employees for both companies were asked to outline any known contributing factors of which 100% of them indicated if there indeed was factors affecting company growth. It was important to get insights on any factors that is making it difficult for companies to perform their operations, mainly transportation. 20% of the employees stated that the weather is the main factor, 20% poor and adequate road transport infrastructure, another 20% indicated slow construction on roads which end up causing roads to shut down and impedes movement. A larger percentage of 40% of the respondents indicated that small roads which causes traffic congestion and end up delaying goods to arrive at customers. The bar graph below is used to represent the factors as stipulated by employees of the two companies.
FIGURE 4.8.4 FACTORS
4.8.5 ARE YOU CONTENT WITH THE CONDITIONS OF ROAD TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE IN BOTSWANA? IF NOT HOW SHOULD THE GOVERNMENT IMPROVE ON THE CURRENT STATE TO BENEFIT TRANSPORT SERVICE PROVIDERS?
100% of the employees are not content with the conditions of the road transport infrastructure and therefore gave suggestions on how the current state can benefit them these being the 60% that stipulated that the government should source funds to make better developments and make significant improvements while 20% suggested that the government could do traffic assessment and study patterns and traffic flows to give an idea on how to build more open roads. The remaining 20% is of a view that the government can make road networks partnership or alliances to help improve and maintain roads and roads infrastructure and as well as impose traffic laws to encourage people to care for road transport infrastructure. The bar graph below is used to represent the suggestions as stipulated by employees of the two companies.
FIGURE 4.7.1 GENDER
4.8.6 WHAT ARE SOME OF THE CHALLENGES THAT POOR ROAD TRANSPORT INFRASTRUCTURE IN BOTSWANA HAS CAUSED IN REGARD TO TRANSPORT SERVICE PROVIDERS LIKE YOUR COMPANY?
The bar graph below is used to demonstrate the challenges as answered by employees of the two companies. As according to the employees 10% of them indicated high maintenance costs of vehicles as they move through uneven and pothole roads causing costs to repair and maintain them to go high or they are frequently being repaired. 40 % brought up the road accident challenge, indicating that poor road transport infrastructure increases road accidents and cause death of drivers and even damage vehicles. They further explain that much time and costs are spent trying to resolve such issues. The remaining 50 % of employees stipulated that loss of goods due to accidents and delay in delivering goods to customers well in time. This can be summed up that lead times and road accidents are the major challenges faced by both companies regarding poor road transport infrastructure.
FIGURE 4.8.6 CHALLENGES
4.8.7 ACCORDING TO YOUR OPINION HOW CAN THE CHALLENGES MENTIONED ABOVE BE IMPROVED?
Respondents were asked to give recommendations on the above mentioned challenges and from the research findings 10% stated picking suitable travel times, 10% included raising road use awareness, another 10% stipulated reviewing driver training curriculum to be in line with the current road infrastructure trends especially by company management if it is slow for the government to implement strategies in time. 60% indicated that the government can build high quality roads that would not cause high volume of vehicles jammed up in roads and also another 10% indicated that the government can work on reviewing large vehicle lanes in order to reduce road accidents and traffic delays for essential vehicles such as trucks that are delivering goods. The bar graph below is used to represent the suggestions as stipulated by employees of the two companies.
FIGURE 4.8.7 IMPROVING CHALLENGES
CHAPTER 5 – DISCUSSION, SUMMARY, CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
This chapter evaluates the entire research study including the research findings and objectives. It covers discussion, summary, conclusions and recommendations. The research study explores the role of road transport infrastructure to Botswana’s economy by carrying out a questionnaire survey. The chapter analyses discussions, summarises the entire events of carrying the research and make recommendations on how the road transport infrastructure influence the economy by evaluating its importance.
- SUMMARY OF THE STUDY
The topic of this research is an investigation into the role of road transport infrastructure in Botswana’s economic development and competitiveness: A case study of Gaborone’s road network. It looked at Gaborone’s road network as the research study area which the population sample of 30 road users and 2 companies (10 employees for both) were selected at simple random sampling. The main objectives among the others of the research study was how poor road transport infrastructure has implicated Botswana’s economic development and make recommendations on how the government of Botswana can make improvements on areas that lack behind. There were two types of questionnaires to the road users and transport servicing provider companies in Gaborone. All the questions were responded to and returned back for evaluation of the research findings. Data was presented in a quantitative form by using tabulation, bar graphs and pie charts.
The findings of the study has indicated that indeed road transport infrastructure has a significant role in the running of transport companies and road users that is citizens and this contributes to the overall economic development of the country. It has proven that if citizens are not happy with the road transport developments chances are more challenges arises leading to another and this affects the daily lives of people. From the research findings there were a lot of challenges and most of the respondents at 100% response rate indicated that they are not content with the current existing road transport infrastructure and this was supported by a number of reasoning that makes this statement true.
From the research findings it is evident that road transport infrastructure is important in the economy of a country. This being the case participants were asked to indicate factors that contribute to the poor road transport infrastructure. From the information given all the points taken into consideration affects the daily lives of Batswana and such the need to develop road transport infrastructure has been a failure even for transport companies, taking the two transport companies in survey as a sample. The findings have proven that more developments and other outcomes within the economy as a whole are as a result of poorly constructed roads and transport systems. 80% of the road users indicated that road transport infrastructure do not provide effective mobility and safety, this means that there are certain outcomes such as loss of lives due to road accidents with uneven and poorly constructed roads.
Anyango, (2014) found out that lack of well-developed road transport infrastructure remains an obstacle in developing the economic growth of Kenya as companies make losses and there is a disturbance to the regional integration. This finding is relevant to this study as majority of the respondents have indicated that mobility from one place to another is a challenge and companies end up in loosing large amounts of money resulting in less taxes and economic growth. The findings of the research stipulate that the government should build high quality roads this is being denoted by the highest percentage of respondents from the transport companies that 60% of them had suggested.
From the road users, 80% of them disagreed to road transport infrastructure providing safety and effective mobility and this can be explained that the road networks particularly in Gaborone do not offer effective movement or regional integration from one place to another this being the case of transport companies as well. They agree at a 100% response rate that they are not content with the state and conditions of the road transport infrastructure. From the transport company survey, 60% have suggested that the government should source funds and build large road transport systems of which the percentage is the highest from the majority. Over 40% of the findings indicate that small roads are a leading cause of traffic congestion which transport companies indicate as major challenges as well. In the event of transporting goods, transport companies have to go through vehicle maintenance costs, loss of vehicles, drivers and goods because of large vehicle accidents occurrences.
This can be concluded that transport companies spend a lot of money on repairs and loss of goods costs as 50% of the respondents stipulated a high response of loss of goods and 40% indicated that road transport accidents are a major challenge making business run losses and eventually affecting the economic development of Botswana. Amongst suggestions from the respondents are raising of road awareness, training drivers on the basis of the conditions of the road transport infrastructure so that they are equip on how to drive certain goods in different roads infrastructure designs and sourcing funds from other government which can help the government of Botswana to nit only build high quality road infrastructure but to also fasten development for economic growth and for every road user to benefit as giving reference to the research findings, majority of the road users are of an opinion that road infrastructure foes not provide them with safety. In conclusion the government encounters fairly high costs of improving infrastructure due to road accidents and damages than actually building larger quality roads. From the finings conclusions can be drawn that Botswana has narrow and in bad state conditions that affects the daily operations of transport companies.
The implications of this study is to give the government of Botswana and transport companies’ insight on improving and going about the influence or role of road transport infrastructure on the economy. It is aimed at addressing challenges and factors contributing to poor road transport infrastructure which when inclusive of private companies, contributes a certain degree to the country’s economic competitiveness. The suggestions given from the research findings would help both the management of companies and the government who is responsible for all individuals utilizing road transport infrastructure to evaluate and analyse possible solutions.
The following are recommendations from the findings of the research as indicated by both the transport companies and road users.
1. The government of Botswana should build much bigger facilities and transport systems that facilitates the expansion of roads and reduces the possibility of potholes on national roads. Building bigger road transport infrastructure allows for reduction in already occurring problem of traffic congestion and traffic jams. The government can build more fly overs where there is not enough space on ground as this allows for better optimisation and usage of land especially that Botswana has shortage of lands.
2. Reviewing of drivers training curriculum to be in line with the current roads infrastructure trends and conditions. This means that the management in transport service providing companies can review and access the drivers training programme to be involving the state of the road transport infrastructure so to equip them on how to drive vehicles and reduce accidents on the roads.
3. Hiring local companies. By hiring local companies instead of procuring foreign investors to construct road transport infrastructure projects, the government can improve on that by hiring local construction companies that would not be expensive to make road transport infrastructure construction from and hence it is significant to take this into consideration.
4. Raise road use awareness. This would allow people to know the road conditions and if possible reach out to potential fund sponsors that could help raise funds and improve on the conditions of the road transport infrastructure. Raising road awareness helps the government to give citizens knowledge and information about road infrastructure problems in order that both the states and the citizens can put heads together to help improve problem.
5. Pick suitable travel times. Another recommendation was for the government and company manager to help analyse and find suitable travel times that can be scheduled and revised over time to allow most private companies to utilise their vehicles well particularly in cities like Gaborone where roads are narrow and there is high capacity of vehicles using the roads including buses that transport people and large trucks for goods.
6. Fasten the road construction and development project. This helps reducing planning and evaluation of road infrastructure developments that take years to complete and hence the government should make plans and implement them in real time.
7. Source funds. One other recommendation is for the government to source funds from other government to maintain damaged roads and build high quality roads that will match the existing capacity of vehicles.
- AREAS FOR FURTHER STUDY
Researchers can go deep in analysing the role of road transport infrastructure to Botswana’s economic development and the significance of improvements in infrastructure. Model the relationship between the two and come with ways that can be put in place to make developments, this can be through taking more time to prepare and understand factors that leads to poor road transport infrastructure. This research was also limited to time constraints and the pandemic events. The future study is needed to establish the main challenges that limits the development and improvements of road transport infrastructure by matching and comparing with other countries that are similarly in the same economic rank as Botswana. Researchers can also formulate questions that address the state and nature of well effective economies that are helped by road transport infrastructure and study the road transport planning and maintenance by the Botswana government and as well as other governments.
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