NYERI, Kenya, Jul 3 – Governors drawn from the central region have commended ongoing efforts by the national government to revive the Nairobi-Nanyuki metre-gauge railway, a move they say will boost the region’s economy.
Speaking during a meeting with the business community at Kiganjo on Friday, the Governors led by the regional bloc Chairperson Nyandarua Governor Francis Kimemia said the railway line, which will facilitate cheap and affordable transportation of goods, will spur the region’s economy.
Farm produce expected to be ferried through the line that collapsed in the nineties include coffee, tea and horticulture.
“Governors from this region want to say that we fully support this Noble project since apart from agricultural products we have minerals that can be transported through rail. It will make doing business cheap hence we will benefit,” said Kimemia.
Kimemia however called for extension of the line to Meru and Nyandarua counties so that each of the ten counties in the central region benefit from the infrastructure.
Vivo energy is among companies in the region that have pledged to use the revamped railway infrastructure to transport their goods.
Governor Kimemia however urged the railway corporation to engage settlers who occupied abandoned properties following the collapse of the railway service in a bid to ensure relocations are done humanely.
“We know that when this line collapsed in the nineties many took advantage and even constructed buildings which you have earmarked for demolition, please do it in a humane manner through consultation,” he appealed.
Nyeri Governor Mutahi Kahiga was more forthright saying the revival of the railway line should not come as a regret to local investors amid impending demolitions targeting illegal occupants of railway property.
“We should not have this colonial mentality where people see the corporation as a colonial relic with some laws of trespass applying. Give them a humane face by allowing them to operate as they seek alternative places to move their investments,” said Kahiga