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July 16, 2018

SGR contractor under pressure to recruit locals

President Uhuru Kenyatta inspects the construction works of the Nairobi-Naivasha Standard Gauge Railway (Phase 2A) - Ngong Tunnel at Em bulbul - Ngong, Kajiado County
President Uhuru Kenyatta inspects the construction works of the Nairobi-Naivasha Standard Gauge Railway (Phase 2A) - Ngong Tunnel at Em bulbul - Ngong, Kajiado County

The project contractor of the Phase 2A of the Standard Gauge Railway China Communications and Construction Company (CCCC) has asked job hopefuls to be patient as they intensify recruitment.

The contractor has intensified employment procedures after members of the community and politicians from the areas along the construction corridor demanded employment of more locals.

The recruitment process along with compensation for land are among key issues the contractor is grappling with as leaders and local communities gang up to stop the work in a bid to stop construction if it is not addressed properly.

Naivasha MP Jane Kihara is among leaders who come out to pressure the contractor to recruit more locals to work in the project.

“We are demanding that the contractor employ 90 per cent of the workforce from the area otherwise we shall not support,” the MP said while addressing the media in Naivasha on Tuesday.

Steve Zhao, spokesperson at the head office of Kenya SGR Project said more opportunities will open up when massive construction starts.

“The project is currently on its initial stage as we conduct geological and preliminary works. As the project advances, we will recruit more people to meet the construction needs,” he said.

The company has already hired over 5,260 workers to do preliminary works of making culverts, excavations and cultivation along the route. These workers are based at the Ongata Rongai, Ngong, Mai Mahiu, Suswa and Nachu substations.

The contractor announced that it has recruited an initial 1,224 residents from Kiambu, Nakuru and Narok counties have now been employed to work on the sub-section 3 office based in Kikuyu area by China Construction Communications Company, the project contractor.

Kenya Railways Corporation has already completed the Relocation Action Plan and notified the Project Affected Persons of the impending acquisition of land by the National Lands Commission. The NLC has already gazetted sections of the corridor signalling the commencement of acquisition.

Zhao said the contractor has so far facilitated temporary accommodation units for employees who would prefer to reside close to the camp. Transport arrangements have been improved with sub section office No. 3 located in Kikuyu, providing seven 50-seater buses to ferry the employees to and from work.

The second phase of the SGR project will pass through five counties including Nairobi, Kajiado, Kiambu, Nakuru and Narok.

It will feature five newly-built stations at Ongata Rongai, Ngong, Mai Mahiu, Suswa and Nachu.

There will be 27 bridges in different sizes, 17.3km altogether and accounting for 14.4 per cent of total project length. Six per cent of the line will consist three tunnels totalling 7.14 kilometres.



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