Over 3,000 Kenyans have benefitted from the ongoing construction of the new railway line between Naivasha Inland Container Depot (ICD) and Longonot, according to the Kenya Railways Corporation.
The disclosure came on Tuesday, February 16 by the corporation after a team from the National Development Implementation and Communication Cabinet Committee (NDICCC) led by Devolution CS Eugene Wamalwa inspected the Ksh3.7 billion project which is currently 50 % complete.
Among the dignitaries who accompanied Wamalwa included Tourism CS Najib Balala, Transport CS James Macharia and Trade CS Betty Maina.From left to right:Tourism CS Najib Balala, Devolution CS Eugene Wamalwa, Transport CS James Macharia and Trade CS Betty MainaFile
The project involves the construction of a 24.35 km of a new Meter Gauge Railway line linking Naivasha ICD with the existing Meter Gauge Railway (MGR) line at Longonot and the construction of two new railway stations.
The corporation noted that the project would integrate the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) and the MGR.
This, in a bid to provide a seamless network to facilitate movement of cargo from the Port of Mombasa to Lake Victoria in Kisumu and also Malaba, the border point with Uganda.
Recently, the government had announced plans to revamp the railway lines in Kenya in order to reduce the traffic congestion experienced along major roads within the country.
Some of the projects done to streamline rail transport include the rehabilitation of the Nairobi Commuter trains along with commissioning of Diesel Mobile Units (DMUs) by President Uhuru Kenyatta.
Kenya Railways has announced the rehabilitation of the meter-gauge railway line from Longonot to the Western region. KRC Chairman Omudho Awitta stated that the project is expected to be completed by 2021.
“We are revitalizing the Metre Gauge Railway line to enhance its accessibility and functionality, a process which will upscale the lines’ contribution to national growth,” Awitta stated.
The project was allocated Ksh3.7 billion by Treasury CS Ukur Yatani in the 2020/21 supplementary budget. He noted that the government had turned to taxpayer money after the state failed to secure a loan from China to commence the project.
“Ksh2.7 billion is for construction of the Naivasha ICD-Longonot railway link and Ksh1 billion is for the rehabilitation of the Longonot-Malaba MGR," Yatani stated.Treasury CS Ukur Yatani addresses the media on November 25, 2020, in Nairobi
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