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December 19, 2018

KeNHA criticised for stalled road project in Busia county

Minister for public works Chris Obure at a press briefing in his office. Photo/Monicah Mwangi
Minister for public works Chris Obure at a press briefing in his office. Photo/Monicah Mwangi

Transport and Infrastrucure Chief Administrative Secretary Chris Obure came to the rescue of the Busia-Malaba road contractor and Kenya National Highway Authority Western region boss after they received a dressing- down from Busia Governor Sospeter Ojaamong.

Obure, Foreign Affairs CAS Ababu Namwamba, County Commissioner Michael Tialal, KeNHA officials and the Busia-Malaba road contractor had visited the governor at his office yesterday.

Ojaamong criticised the contractor, identified only as Ali, for the stalled project which stopped the governor from accessing his rural home and stalling activities along the busy road.

Ojaamong also took issue with KeNHA Western region boss, identified only as Engineer Mutua, for overlooking the maintenance of the Busia-Kisumu road. He urged Obure to transfer him.

“I am being blamed by residents for the deplorable state of the northern corridor in Busia yet KeNHA is sitting in Kakamega as if nothing is happening,” Ojaamong said.

The governor also regretted that the Kenya Urban Roads Authority is operating in other urban centres, except Busia. “We need Kura’s presence felt in Busia and an assurance it will tarmack at least 20km of urban roads.”

Ojaamong asked Namwamba and Obure to shed light on what happened with the Sh200 million the British government donated to Busia for the Northern Corridor dualisation project from the border town to Korinda.

Deputy Governor Moses Mulomi said Busia and Malaba border towns suffer from the trailer pile ups that stretch more than 20km in Malaba and 10km in Busia. There are no by-passes yet all trailers from Mombasa converge in the two border towns.

Obure told KeNHA to ensure the Busia-Malaba road is completed in time. “ If the contractor sleeps on his job they should be fired. I will not accept laxity,” he said.

Namwamba said if the contractor is not up to the task he should leave the job. Obure said they were in the county to inspect ongoing projects sponsored by the national government.

They are the Busia-Malaba road, Malaba-Malakisi-Lwakhakha road and the Sigiri Bridge. “I need the support of leaders and residents on the ongoing work,” Namwamba said.

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