iAfrica

Be Smart About South Africa

The Real Cost of Kenya’s New Railway

A man carries an infant as he walks along the platform in front an SGR train traveling to Mombasa from the Nairobi SGR Terminus, outside Nairobi, Kenya, October 22, 2019. Picture taken October 22, 2019. REUTERS/Baz Ratner

Kenya this week is celebrating 1,000 days of standard gauge railway operation, with 13,000 trains covering 6.3 million kilometers. The Chinese-built railway moves people and goods from the port of Mombasa to the capital, Nairobi, and also to a small town in Naivasha. As the government boasts about the country’s most expensive infrastructure project since independence, the $3.2 billion cost has moved front and center. Many Kenyans think the country got a raw deal compared to its neighbors, Ethiopia and Tanzania. Critics of the projects say they are putting the country into a debt crisis and making it indebted to China. Okiya Omtata is an activist who challenged the government in court to make a deal with China public since 2013. Omtata has petitioned the court to terminate the railway deal with the Chinese. He also argues the cost of the railway construction was inflated.

SOURCE: VOA

Share with your network!