The United States has agreed to construct a superhighway between Nairobi and Mombasa following the agreement between President Donald Trump of the USA and Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya.
According to a statement released by the White House, the 473-kilometer road will have four lanes, 19 interchanges and is expected to reduce travel time between Nairobi and Mombasa from 10 to four hours.
The project is set to be undertaken by the US firm Bechtel and “both sides have agreed to undertake further consultations to conclude the terms of financing the project.”
The White House announced that both Kenya and USA agreed on deals worth nearly 900 million dollars that are aimed at “creating thousands of American and Kenyan jobs, further enhancing the prosperity of economic competitiveness.”
According to Kenya National Highway Authority (KENHA) the superhighway is set to complement the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) that has been instrumental in linking Nairobi and Mombasa.
The SGR was constructed by the Chinese who provided the funding and have been widely blamed for bringing in their own labor and leaving out Kenyans.
Transport and Infrastructure CS will be flying to China to sign another contract that will see SGR extended to Kisumu at a cost of 380 billion shillings.
Bechtel, which has been working in the country for the past two years, is set to employ approximately 4,000 people and is also expected to “provide training and capacity building.”
A section of Kenyans has received the news with mixed reactions. Most Kenyans feel that there are more important things that need attention than thinking of a road between Mombasa and Nairobi.
The government has insisted that the road is necessary for enhancing the economic growth of the country. Most Kenyans are still concerned about the ever-ballooning public debt that now is at 5 trillion shillings with the largest lenders being the World Bank and the Chinese.