Visiting French President Emmanuel Macron and President Uhuru Kenyatta will today tour the Nairobi Central Railway Station.
Uhuru and Macron are expected to hold a joint press briefing after the tour; on the proposed development of a commuter rail service from the station to the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA).
The two are expected to announce their governments’ partnership in making train services in the country’s biggest airport a reality.
Meanwhile, the Kenya Railways Corporation (KRC) and the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) management will conduct a locomotive driving licence examination for 15 senior assistant locomotive drivers.
The May 2019 examination will access Kenyan drivers who are expected to take over the operations of SGR locomotives from Chinese nationals.
KRC said it would instruct four of its senior locomotive drivers, who will organise a test in collaboration with instructors from the SGR operator.
SGR is being operated by the China Road and Bridge Corporation.
The locomotive driving licence will be issued by KRC.
“We appreciate SGR management’s efforts to train Kenyan locomotive drivers who have acquired skills over the past two years.
They are ready to take up the challenge from their Chinese counterparts,” KRC said in an alert.
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Since July last year, the China Road and Bridge Corporation has been training the locomotive drivers.
The training covers safety regulations, safety equipment, locomotive engines and electrical appliances theory as well as driving simulation.
After passing the grading examination of an assistant locomotive driver in October last, 24 of the trainees have now successfully upgraded their skills to intermediate level.
Fifteen of the intermediate assistants, including four women and 11 men, have now upgraded to the senior level successfully.
They have now started to operate locomotives on passenger trains, cargo trains as well as shunting machines.
There are 77 assistant locomotive drivers working with the SGR. That includes 15 senior assistants, 24 intermediate assistants and 38 junior assistants.
In addition, 125 new locomotive trainees have been recruited.