Kenya pledges action on illegal activities along rail line

Source: Xinhua| 2017-09-28 18:15:18|Editor: An
Video PlayerClose

NAIROBI, Sept. 28 (Xinhua) -- The Kenyan Railway Corporation (KRC) and the China Road and Bridge Corporation (CRBC) have vowed to enhance safety along the Nairobi-Mombasa Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) route to tackle vandalism and encroachment by herders.

The two corporations said in a statement published by the Standard Newspaper on Thursday that action will be taken on individuals who engaged in criminal activities that could jeopardize the safety of the commuters on the SGR passenger train called Madaraka Express.

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta on May 31 launched the SGR passenger train amid fanfare and high expectations from Kenyans who were accustomed to the old train service launched by British colonialists a century ago.

The Madaraka Express train service has not only revolutionized transportation but also opened up Kenya's hinterland to new investments and commerce.

"So far, more than 100 days since the launch, Madaraka Express has moved close to 323,000 passengers, an average of 2,700 per day. The most important factor on this service is safety of passengers which requires that the infrastructure and equipment must remain intact at all times," the statement said.

The two corporations condemned criminal elements residing among communities adjacent to the SGR route for involvement in activities that compromised the railway's safety.

"Such criminal acts include breaking down fences erected along the railway line for grazing livestock or vandalizing railway installations. Others have been involved in theft of railway material for disposal as scrap metal," the corporations said.

They added that several suspects have been arrested to answer charges of jeopardizing the safety of the SGR train.

"One criminal is serving a jail term having been convicted by the court while another is still on the run," they said.

The two corporations appealed to the Kenyan public living along the entire SGR corridor to report illegal activities like burglary and vandalism.

"We appeal to all Kenyans to participate in the safeguarding of the SGR line for the benefit of all," the statement concluded.