The government of Kenya is set to unveil the revamped Kisumu port which has undergone an intensive seven month upgrade. The anticipated historic launch is expected to put the port back on the map of Kenya’s shipping and maritime economy, and on the path to recovering its lost glory after decades of under-performance.
The US $30m port upgrade project
The project, perhaps the biggest among several others lined up by the government for the lake region in recent times, is expected to turn around the economic fortunes of the region and revive a thriving blue economy, creating thousands of employment opportunities for the locals. The government has pumped more than US $30m into the port’s rehabilitation, where work has been going round the clock since March, closely monitored by the President and Hon Raila Odinga.
The two will be joined by East African heads of state for the anticipated launch, after a team from the Presidential Delivery Unit conducts a final inspection of the facility. Local planning teams are working with the tentative date of August 15, earlier announced by Mr. Odinga and the office of the President.
There are indications however that the date could be pushed to August 17th 2019. Sources close to the project revealed that 90% of the works is complete, but that the remaining 10% is critical, and it might not be possible to go ahead with the launch until it is done.
“We are still working with the tentative date. But there is a likelihood that the launch date could be pushed back until the remaining work is finished. It is not advisable to rush,” intimated the source. The upgraded port facilities and improved shipyard are expected to improve efficiency and sustain ship building repairs at the inland port and help it regain its former vibrancy, among other services.