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County set to get first ever stretch of tarmac next year

By Maarufu Mohamed | Published Thu, February 15th 2018 at 00:00, Updated February 14th 2018 at 23:31 GMT +3
Construction work on the section of the 15 kilomters Hindi-Mokowe road in Lamu County on Tuesday,13 February,2018.[Photo by Maarufu Mohamed/Standard]

The county’s first-ever tarmac road is set for completion by November next year, says the Kenya Urban Roads Authority (Kura).

Already, 10 per cent of the works on the Sh1.1 billion 15km stretch has been completed in Mokowe, where the county government headquarters is located.

During an onsite visit, Kura acting Director for Policy and Compliance Abdulrashid Mohammed said the project was on schedule despite it being in an area that has never had a road network before.

He however said the project still faced the challenge of encroachment by private landowners.

Lamu County Commissioner Gilbert Kitiyo had earlier said Mokowe was one of the major areas in Lamu affected by encroachment and invasion of Government land.

“Encroachment on parts of the road is a challenge for the road contractor, although the county commissioner has already been engaged to ensure that the squatters make way,” said Mr Mohammed.

Governor Fahim Twaha, who received the Kura delegation in his office, termed the project a milestone for Lamu. He said the urban road network would help to modernise the new county administrative capital.

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Lapsset project

Mr Twaha said he expected more road expansion in the county in light of the Lamu Port-South Sudan-Ethiopia Transport (Lapsset) project whose success he noted hinged on a good road network.

He also said there were ongoing road works, including clearing of bushes on certain sections of the Lamu-Witu road, adding that the contractor had been provided with adequate security to ensure completion of the highway.

“The contractor assigned to do the main highway has assured us that the highway will be completed in 18 months,” said the governor.

Separately, players in the tourism industry in the county have called on the national government to compel the contractor of the Minjila-Witu-Mokowe highway to hasten the upgrading of the road.

Lamu Palace Hotel General Manager Keziah Mumbi said having an all-weather road linking Lamu to the rest of Kenya would help to open up the county.

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