NAIROBI, September 12 – Prime Minister (PM) Raila Odinga on Friday announced plans by the government to award road concessions to the private sector so as to hasten infrastructural development in the country.,
Odinga said concessioning would ensure the government got private financing for infrastructural projects and facilitate speedy delivery of the needed road network.
“We have already given concession of the southern bypass and a section of the northern bypass," he said.
The PM directed the Roads Minister to put extra effort in adopting the concept of Road concessioning.
Odinga said the policy shift would cut government expenditures since public funds earmarked for maintenance could be diverted to other projects.
He urged all stakeholders to embrace these reforms and work toward their success.
“I don’t have to remind you that we require world class roads to help us achieve the millennium development goals by 2015.”
The PM made the remarks during the official launch of the Kenya National Highway Authority (KeNHA), Kenya Rural Roads Authority (KeRRA) and the Kenya Urban Roads Authority (KURA) whose roles would be to oversee implementation of road works falling under respective jurisdictions.
KeNHA will advise the Roads Minister on technical issues such as axle load control, research and development.
KeRRA will be responsible for all rural and small town roads, forest roads and county council game reserve roads.
KeRRA will manage and maintain all road works in cities and major municipalities.
In his speech Roads and Public Works Minister Chris Obure said the government planned to have 64,000 kilometres of well-maintained roads in the next 5 years.
Obure said the roads would be crucial in opening up the countryside and enhancing economic activities.
Strategies to be adopted to achieve this target include increasing the pace road projects are completed and ensuring there within budget.