Kenya to build two security roads in Lamu County stretching 250km

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The government of Kenya is set to build two security roads in Lamu County stretching 250km at a cost of US $228m to boost security and infrastructure across the coastal county ahead of the inauguration of a new port.

The two roads – 150km Hindi-Kiunga road and the 100km Ijara-Hulugho road – are expected to complement the Lamu-Witu-Garsen road that is currently 88% complete, in improving the Class A network of roads in Lamu which until mid-2016 did not have an inch of tarmac.

Improving security in Lamu

According to Kenya National Highways Authority (KeNHA) Chairman Engineer Wangai Ndirangu the two security roads have already been budgeted for in the current financial year. “The two security roads will have a two-pronged effect of improving security within the Lamu-Boni area, as well as opening up the area for future investors once the Lamu Port operationalization takes off later this year,” said Engineer Ndirangu.

He further added that the Hindi-Kiunga road which is expected to serve as the main tarmacked road connecting Kenya to Somalia via Lamu, will aid in improving cross border trade relations with Somalia once diplomatic tensions are settled. “Initially gravel works, and clearing of the two road corridors will be done and we expect works to begin in April this year,” he revealed.

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Currently the banditry prone Hindi-Kiunga road is in a state of disrepair and local leaders have been lobbying the national government to upgrade and tarmac it. Regrettably due to its condition, the road has been a common target for Al-Shabaab militants who implant IEDs on it.

Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) Chairman General (Rtd) Joseph Kibwana stated that there are also plans to ensure initial gravel and clearing works start on the 255Km Lamu-Garissa road in tandem with the two security roads. Kibwana said that the Lamu-Garissa road will form a permanent route for ferrying goods along the Northern corridor all the way up to Southern Ethiopia. The road will connect with the Garissa-Moyale road that is already tarmacked.