Minister assures Ugandans on Standard Gauge Railway project

Minister assures Ugandans on Standard Gauge Railway project
The $3.2bn China-funded Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) is Kenya's largest post-independence infrastructure

The Minister of Works and Transport Monica Azuba has said that the government is committed to constructing the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) whether Kenya plays its part or not.

Kenya is currently constructing 120km line from Nairobi to Naivasha at $1.7bn and will be followed by Naivasha to Kisumu at $3.6bn then later the 130km line from Kisumu to Malaba border in Uganda where Uganda is supposed to start.

However, Uganda’s phase one, running from Malaba to Kampala at 273km which is expected to cost $2.3bn shillings has been delayed.

Government argues that they are yet to access the funds after Exim Bank asked them to review the cost.

Minister of Works and Transport Monica Azuba says that Uganda has a plan to build its network from the Ugandan side whether from the Standard Gauge or Uganda Railways but will use badges between Kisumu and Port Bell and Majanji at the North East corner of Lake Victoria.

Azuba says that before they implement a plan; they have to look at how far Kenya is progressing.

Azuba says although the actual completion of the railway will last three and a half years, the minimum time for completion will be five years.

The State Minister of State for Works, Katumba Wamala said the problem they are facing is majorly financing. He says that Exim Bank does not want to fund an incomplete project.

He says there should not be any fears that the project has been abandoned.

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