Embu farming-rich zones to get 100km roads in next 2 years


Embu farmer Ann Mukami: The county says the roads will reduce wastage. PHOTO | FILE

Embu County will from next month kick off construction of a 100-kilometre county road circuit at a cost Sh3.5 billion in an ambitious modern cost-effective method to boost communication.

Infrastructure executive committee member Suleiman Nthiga said the road network will cover the four constituencies in a plan to open up the region for investment in the agriculture-rich region.

Speaking in Embu town on Thursday, Mr Nthiga said the county government would construct the Embu-Kibugu, Kivwe-Kevote, Runyenjes-Mukuuri-Kanja, Kivwe-Kithimu, Kiritiri-Siakago roads , which would be built by the end of 2017.

The roads, which will be built at a cost of Sh30 million per kilometre, will cover agriculture-rich zones and are meant to boost market accessibility and reduce wastage.

Mr Nthiga said the new method which will see the county build roads measuring 10 metres complete with pedestrian walk and drainage system using cheaper materials and locally available labour.

He said the tender bids have been received and county had selected five international road construction companies. He said they are looking for a company capable of financing the project which would cost Sh3 billion, and then recoup Sh3.5 billion inclusive of interest.

“We are looking for a company that can make a turn-key project, where the company will finance and then be paid later. The company which will be announced this week, will also maintain the road for the next 10 years,” said Mr Nthiga.

He said the county was committed to opening up the grain basket of Kithimu and Mbeere and the upper coffee and tea zones.

Mr Nthiga said the technology will cut costs by one-third and eventually cover a wider network.