Kenya announces plan to buy land for standard gauge railway

A recirculated news report originally by Reuters points out the land acquisition economic issues as Kenya seeks to build a huge multi billion dollar Chinese loan funded standard 1435mm gauge rail netwok

Land Acquisition Issues   —

Kenya says it will pay 4.4-billion shillings ($45-million) to acquire land for its standard gauge railway network.  The $13.8 billion rail project, will eventually link Kenya’s Indian Ocean Mombasa port to the capital Nairobi, then on to Uganda.

However, land acquisition is still a construction roadblock.  Kenya’s National Land Commission is overseeing the compensation, involving up to 1,500 local land owners with land along the railway path.  They need to receive compensation to vacate their properties.

Not everyone is satisfied. On Tuesday, some land owners held protests to say they were being offered too little. “They are offering me only 28 000 shillings ($288.51) for my two-room house, which they will demolish. How do I build another one elsewhere with that little cash?” Peter Ashimosi, one of the protesters, told Reuters.

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