Optic cables to pave way for Sh33bn Murang’a road


Transport CS James Macharia inspecting works on Kenol-Sagana-Marua road. FILE PHOTO | NMG

The Ministry of ICT is seeking to relocate fibre optic cables from the Sh33 billion Kenol-Marua road to facilitate its construction.

In recently published tender documents, the State has invited bids for design, supply, installation, commissioning and maintenance of the fibre optic cable along the 84km road.

Construction of the dual carriageway passing through Nairobi started in October last year and is scheduled conclude in October 2023.

“The government requires that all the utilities along the Kenol-Marua Road be relocation of by September 30, to facilitate completion of the road. State Department of ICT and Innovation will undertake relocation of the fibre infrastructure to minimise downtime,” says the ICT Ministry.

One of the key ICT infrastructure running along the road is the National Optic Fibre Backbone Infrastructure (Nofbi) project that started in 2005, as the State moved to connect all major towns with high-speed broadband internet.

Currently, Nofbi fibre optic ring passes through 58 towns in 35 counties across Kenya.

Relocation of the optic cable will be in two lots: Kenol-Kambiti-Sagana (50km) and Sagana-Karatina-Marua (38km).

The new design will integrate into Nofbi and connect to all government sites and institutions along the road as well as to the existing licensed internet service providers and telcos.

“The bidder shall develop a high-level and low-level network designs that will be approved by the employer,” says the ICT Ministry.

The Kenol–Sagana–Marua road project is part of the Trans-African Highway—the main transport route serving East and Central African countries from Nairobi to Moyale.

This is the second road on which the government is relocating crucial fibre optic cable to avoid internet outages during construction. The first relocation was on the 234km Nairobi-Mau Summit road.

Relocation of the optic cable on the Nairobi-Mau Summit road will be in four lots: Rironi-Naivasha via Mai Mahiu, Rironi-Naivasha, Naivasha-Nakuru and Nakuru-Mau Summit.

Construction of the Nairobi-Mau Summit road project begins in September and seeks to expand the road into a four-lane dual carriageway through a Public-Private Partnership model.