SGR taxpayer burden

By Mercy Imali

Taxpayers now have to dig deeper to cushion Kenya Railways (KR) from the SGR burden.  SGR operations and maintenance costs have ballooned by the day compelling Kenya Railways to seek funding from the Treasury.

The debt-burden stems from May 30, 2017 ‘skewed’ deal that compels KR to seek funding from the Treasury should it find itself unable to pay maintenance bills for the Mombasa-Nairobi line.  The deal is between China Roads and Bridges Corporation (CRBC) and Kenya Railways.

Already, CRBC has sent KR a bill of KSH 31 billion which remains unpaid as the railway operations enter their second year. About KSH 800 million is from accumulated penalties for delayed payments.

This is on top of KSH 327 billion loan borrowed from the China Exim bank in 2014 to build the railway line.