Ruto's Order on SGR Takes Effect, KPA Issues Guidelines

An SGR Cargo train on the move
SGR Cargo train on the move.

The Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) began implementing President William Ruto's directive of restoring the operations of clearing goods back to the port of Mombasa. 

In a statement issued on Monday, September 26, KPA Managing Director, John Mwangemi affirmed to all shipping lines that the place of clearance and mode of transport for their goods shall be at their choice. 

Further, shipping Lines were advised to facilitate importers' nomination of place of clearance including Port clearance, Kenya Revenue Authority's Licensed Container Freight Stations (CFSS) and Kenya Ports Authority's Inland Container depots.

An Image of a cargo clearance officer supervising clearance at Mombasa port
An Image of a cargo clearance officer supervising clearance at Mombasa port

"Kenya Ports Authority wishes to affirm its commitment to implement the directive by His Excellency the President during his inauguration on 13th September 2022 that "clearing of all goods and other attendants operational
issues to revert to the Port of Mombasa," KPA stated. 

He added that the notice superseded the 2018 directive that forced importers to use the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR). 

A public notice issued by the Kenya Revenue Authority and KPA noted that all imported cargo for delivery to Nairobi shall be conveyed by the SGR and cleared at the Inland Container Depot- Nairobi. Further, all imported cargo intended for Mombasa and its environs would be cleared at the port of Mombasa. 

"KRA and KPA are committed to the highest standards of providing services to all our customers in accordance to the Port Community Charter," read part of the notice. 

During his inauguration speech, Ruto affirmed that the directive to revert operations to the Mombasa port was necessitated by the need to boost the country's economy and enhance the ease of doing business. 

"I will be issuing instructions for clearing of goods and other attendant operational duties to the port of Mombasa as I made a commitment to Kenyans. This will restore thousands of jobs in the city of Mombasa," Ruto pointed out. 

While popularising the bottom-up agenda in his campaign period, Ruto noted that the SGR was a project benefitting a handful of individuals. 

"The SGR was intended to make the port much more efficient. Unfortunately, a few people took hostage of the whole program and ended up with selfish programs that benefit a few people to the detriment of the people on the Coast."

"We have committed that administrative and legal steps will be taken to reverse what has become the biggest impoverishment to the people at the Coast," Ruto stated in May 2022.

president William Ruto, during the thanksgiving service at State House Nairobi on Sunday, September 25, 2022..jpg (
President William Ruto, during the thanksgiving service at State House, Nairobi, on Sunday, September 25, 2022.
Mama Rachel Ruto