95% of work done on Ugandan metre gauge railway line

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95% of work done on Ugandan metre gauge railway line

The construction of the $31 million Kampala-Malaba metre gauge railway line is nearing completion, with 95 percent of the work done, the contractor, Chinese Railway and Bridge Cooperation CRBC, said in a statement.

The phased rehabilitation of the route started in February with funding from the African Development Bank Group AfDB and is due to be completed next month.

The first phase included engineering for the multimodal hub Kampala-Namanve and the refurbishment of the sections of Kampala-Namanve and Tororo-Malaba, totalling 28 kilometres.

The second phase included the Environmental Study and impact assessment ESIA purchase of workshop equipment and rolling stock, such as wagons and locomotives, as well as the rehabilitation of sections Namanve-Tororo, Port Bell line, Jinja Pier line and Kampala-Kyengera sections totalling 245 km.

The railway, part of the Northern Corridor of the East African community that links Kampala to the Port of Mombasa in Kenya, is expected to boost rail services and lower transportation costs.

We have fitted everything, including rails, slippers, compacted stones, Qin Jian, CRBC's engineering chief, said in an interview at the weekend.

In February, we shall be able to hand over the project as planned, because the remaining five percent 28 km is too small. We want to complete the rehabilitation work on time so that the trains can keep moving, he said.

In order to curb vandalism at the newly rehabilitated line, the Uganda Railways Corporation's senior public relations and communication officer, John Sengendo, said, they are going to employ permanent inspectors and install sensors to detect broken points on rails.

Kenya, Uganda, Kenya are among the project's teams to complete the old metre gauge rail project.

The loss of pavement is not just about taking slippers or rails, but also stones. We are also working with the Uganda Peoples Defence Forces and local leaders along the line to see that vandalism stops, Sengendo said.

Passengers are also being constructed, he said, and they are going to lay a concrete slipper line from Mukono to Kampala, Mukono to Kyengera, and Kampala to Port Bell.

We shall have a diesel multiple unit or DMU, which will carry people so that we can reduce traffic gridlock, he said.