Two footbridges will be constructed in Magarini, Kilifi County at a cost of Sh80 million.
Public Works principal secretary, Paul Maringa said the footbridges at Shakahola and Bombi will replace those swept away by floods in April this year after River Galana-Sabaki broke its banks.
Speaking at Shakahola after touring the area accompanied by area MP Michael Kingi and Adu MCA Stanley Kenga, the PS said the engineers are expected to complete “the process of setting up design” in two weeks.
“There is urgent need for the two bridges to be constructed to save the locals from the deadly crocodiles and hippos in River Galana,” Prof Mwaringa said, adding “the issue of the bridge cannot wait as it requires urgent intervention.”
Prof Maringa said they have been receiving complaints from the local leadership, adding that construction could start before the end of this year.
Residents, including school children, who cross the river on foot daily are at risk of attacks by crocodiles and hippopotamus.
The PS said each bridge will be constructed at an estimated cost of Sh40 million.
“We shall be looking for funds, then do the tendering, advertisements. We need it to take the shortest time possible... so before the end of the year the project will start,’’ he said.
Motor cycle operators also have no choice but to risk the crocodile-infested river as it is easier to access Malindi from that point than travelling to Marafa, then crossing the Sabaki Bridge.
One of the two footbridges will connect Shakahola and Baricho while the other — located 15km away — will link Bombi and Kisiki Cha Mzungu area.