The Star (Nairobi)

20 June 2013

Kenya: Ministry to Speed Up Eldoret By-Pass

The government is to speed up completion of the Northern Corridor road in order to ease movement of goods from the Port of Mombasa to other countries in the region.

Cabinet Secretary for Infrastructure Michael Kamau said the completion of the key road linking the region will include a by-pass in Eldoret to cost more than Sh2 billion.

Kamau said they had identified the by-pass as a bottleneck delaying completion of the road that is meant to ease movement of goods and cargo from the port to neighbouring countries.

Kamau and his Industrialization counterpart Adan Muhammed made an extensive tour of Eldoret and parts of Western Kenya to asses infrastructure development among other projects and programmes aimed at unlocking trade in the region.

They particularly focused on the ongoing construction of the Northern Corridor which leads from the Mombasa Port to Nairobi, Nakuru, Eldoret and Malaba.

"We have identified the by-pass in Eldoret as a key component of the road which must be hastened because it has taken quite a long time and we will now move to have it done,"said Kamau.

Already four possible routes for the by-pass have been identified and Kamau said officials from the Kenya National Highways Authority will be in Eldoret next week to discus with the county government on the details of the by-pass.

The construction of the Sh7.8 billion Eldoret-Malaba Highway is going on as part of the Northern Corridor highway.

The secretaries are also met with governors for Uasin Gishu Jackson Mandago and Ken Lusaka for Bungoma

"We visited the Mombasa Port recently and our main focus now is to see how we can hasten completion of the North Corridor road to ease transportation of cargo and general trade between Kenya and other countries in the region," said Kamau.

He said the government was keen to open up the country for investments and this could only be achieved through putting in place a good infrastructure.

Kamau explained that the government was in the process of modernmising the weigh bridges at Mariakani, Mlolongo and Gilgil as one off the measures to ease transport along the corridor.

"We expect to finish the project by March and go on with other infrastructure plans," said Kamau.

Adan says the country is set to attract major investments following the successful general elections last March.

Adan however says they are dealing with bottlenecks which may affect the country's ability to attract more investors.

He says the government is putting in place measures to improve the infrastructure and other requirements to make Kenya a major investment herb in Africa.

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