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Counties

Lamu 15km road to link key public facilities

A section of the 1.5km new Mokowe road in Lamu West on January 31, 2018. The road is being constructed by Kura. PHOTO | KALUME KAZUNGU | NMG
A section of the 1.5km new Mokowe road in Lamu West on January 31, 2018. The road is being constructed by Kura. PHOTO | KALUME KAZUNGU | NMG  

Lamu residents have praised the building of a 15-kilometre tarmack road, saying it was coming after a long wait.

The Kenya Urban Roads Authority (Kura) is building a 15-kilometre road at Mokowe Town, the county headquarters.

The Sh1.1 billion project is being undertaken by Liberty Builders Limited.

“We have completed tarmacking the first 1.5km out of the intended 15 kilometres. Work is in progress and we expect the whole project to be complete by November next year. Locals have also benefited from our CSR programmes,” said Kura acting director in-charge of policy strategy and compliance Mohamed Abdulrashid.

The project started in May, 2017.

The Mokowe road is expected to link all public facilities and improve security and access in the town and its environs.

Apart from Lamu, the roads agency is also working on 143 kilometres of roads in 14 counties at a total cost of Sh6.9 billion under the low volume seal programme. The programme mainly targets marginalised counties’ headquarters.

Many of the residents said they had never stepped on a tarmac road and expressed disappointment over marginalisation of the area with huge, agriculture, fisheries and tourism potential by successive governments.

Since Independence, the Lamu residents have been using dusty and muddy roads, including the main Lamu-Garsen road.

It was only during the advent of devolution that roads in historical Lamu town were paved using cabro.

Despite President Uhuru Kenyatta launching the tarmacking of Garsen-Lamu road in March last year, work is yet to start.

The Mokowe project is slated to transform the town into a modern centre, matching its upcoming status as the host to Kenya’s second port-the Lamu Port South Sudan Ethiopia Transport (Lapsset) corridor. It is at Mokowe Jetty where travellers to Lamu board boats to the town.

The project is already attracting investments in the area with many businesses in Lamu Old town shifting from the island to Mokowe in the mainland.

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