Kakamega and EPZA sign deal to set up industrial park in Matungu

EPZA operations and investor support general manager Meshack Kimeu and Kakamega Trade executive Kassim Ali after signing an MoU to set up an industrial park in Matungu on Wednesday /CALISTUS LUCHETU
EPZA operations and investor support general manager Meshack Kimeu and Kakamega Trade executive Kassim Ali after signing an MoU to set up an industrial park in Matungu on Wednesday /CALISTUS LUCHETU

A memorandum of understanding has been signed between the Kakamega county government and the Export Processing Zone Authority to set up an industrial park in Matungu subcounty.

More than 5,000 jobs will be created on completion of the park.

The industrial park is expected to attract international investors.

The MoU was signed on Wednesday at the county headquarters by Trade executive Kassim Ali and EPZA operations and investor support general manager Meshack Kimeu.

Ali said the county government has donated 48 acres for lease by the Authority. Another 42 acres will be provided for the mega project that will transform Kakamega county’s readiness for industrial takeoff. county’s commitment

He said the county government would ensure the development of key infrastructure, including upgrading of roads and water supply to fast-track the project.

“I believe this partnership will bear fruit, unlike other MoUs where after signing one party disappears despite all manner of communication. The county government is fully committed to this project and will do everything possible to propel the required processes for the benefit of Kakamega people,” Ali said.

Kimeu said the Authority was committed to establish industrial parks in every county across the country.

He praised Kakamega for providing land for the project.

“Our main challenge is normally the delay in getting land and leasing process. We always require a minimum of 100 acres for a beginning and a lease period of between 60 and 99 years for us to work effectively but in many cases, lease processes drag for a long time, which inconveniences our commencement,” Kimeu said.

County secretary and head of public service Jacinta Odhiambo, ICT executive George Lutomia, county attorney Moses Sande and economic adviser Paul Posho praised the deal, saying it is a milestone towards building a solid development legacy for Governor Wycliffe Oparanya.

Also present were Trade chief officer Fanuel Angaya and EPZA legal services assistant manager Ephantus Mogere.

Last week, Oparanya said plans were underway to set up manufacturing plants to spur economic growth and provide employment.

He said his government had rolled out programmes to ensure access to clean drinking water by all residents and electricity by 2021.

“We plan to develop a large-scale project to harness, treat and distribute water to all villages using innovations such as solar energy and water gravity flow,” Oparanya said.

The county, in collaboration with the Rural Electrification Authority (REA), has commissioned 180 transformers in the county.

This will ensure that there is adequate supply of power to all households in the county by 2022.