June 24, 2024
CS Murkomen Wants More Than Ksh.1B For Repair Of The Damaged Railway

CS Murkomen Wants More Than Ksh.1B For Repair Of The Damaged Railway

The Ministry of Transport currently estimates that it will cost the country approximately Ksh.1 billion to restore the railway damage caused by the April floods this year.

The flash floods, which killed over 70 people, also devastated railway infrastructure and halted the transit of commodities between Mombasa and Malaba, as well as neighboring countries that rely on the railway.

The Metre Gauge Railway along the Kijabe-Longonot route experienced the brunt of the natural disaster triggered by the floods.

The trail made by the floods, as they proceeded downstream, can still be seen weeks after the sad event.

The floods and landslides that followed were so powerful that they severed parts of the railway in some areas.

In several cases, the waves wiped away the earth beneath the railway, leaving the line dangling in space. According to the ministry, natural disasters were not the sole cause of this catastrophe.

Transport Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen said: “The problem we are facing is because of environmental deflation and climate change, if you look at what is happening up there, there is massive destruction of trees and it has been going on for a while, when it rained it brought with it stumps of trees.”

The damage to the railway line and roads in the area has had far-reaching consequences for the local community and beyond.

For cargo transit, the railway line connects Mombasa’s port with Malaba. It was also part of the passenger train network that served Kisumu.

These services are currently suspended, leaving goods such as fertilizer, maize, cement, and other transit items stuck in Mombasa’s port.

According to the ministry, this is causing major supply chain delays and negatively impacting firms that rely on these commodities.

“There has been massive damage caused by the floods that will require extensive investment in terms of resources and machinery to be able to restore this railway line. The ministry is looking to the National Treasury for sufficient budgetary allocations to enable it to quickly carry out the needed repairs,” Murkomen added.

“We are talking about amounts that will run into billions of shillings. One bridge for example can cost upwards of a billion…we are talking about a number of similar bridges in this area alone.”

Repairs to sections of the area’s damaged roads and railway lines have already begun, but the ministry says the difficult task of rebuilding the shattered links will take considerably longer and cost much more.

CS Murkomen Wants More Than Ksh.1B For Repair Of The Damaged Railway

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