The government has released Sh130 million to renovate four key jetties in Lamu County which are structurally unsound.
In March this year, the government had announced plans to reconstruct and renovate six jetties in the county most of which face closure due to poor maintenance.
Jetties in Lamu play a very important role since they are the only entry and exit points to Lamu town and other adjacent islands.
It should be noted that 99 per cent of movement and transport by Lamu residents is at sea.
The jetties are therefore a crucial element since they aid the transfer of passengers and cargo to and from marine vehicles. Most of the jetties are in a poor state and reconstruction will cost the government not less than Sh1 billion.
Speaking in Lamu on Friday, Chief Structural Engineer in the Public Works Department Hillary Nyaanga said those to be renovated include Mokowe Customs Jetty, Lamu Terminal Jetty, Manda Airport Jetty, and Mtangawanda Jetty.
Mr Nyaanga said assessment of the state of the jetties had already been done and a report submitted to the relevant authorities and approved before the money was released.
He said preliminary requests including design s and planning of construction have already been finalised.
Mr Nyaanga said work is set to begin by September this year.
He said that a total of Sh80 million had been set aside for building the Mokowe Customs Jetty, while Sh25 million was allocated to the renovation of Lamu Terminal Jetty.
Sh20 million will go towards renovation of Manda Airport Jetty while another Sh5 million will be used to renovate the Mtangawanda Jetty. “We have already received cash to undertake the first phase of renovation of four key jetties in Lamu,” he said. Mr Nyaanga had earlier announced that Sh 400 million will be spent on building Mokowe jetty.
The facility is in a deplorable state.
Some lanes have collapsed, endangering travellers.
Apart from the four jetties, others which require urgent renovation include Kizuke Jetty and Jeti ya Ng’ombe.
“We want to give all the Lamu jetties a modern facelift. For the Mokowe Jetty, we will have to reconstruct it afresh. For the Lamu Terminal Jetty, we will have to change a section. At Manda Airport Jetty, we will repair the pontoon which is already in the water and also do protection work.”