The Kilifi County Development Implementation and Coordination Committee (CDICC) says it is satisfied with the implementation of multi-billion shilling government projects in Malindi Sub County.
The committee has cited the implementation of the Sh.4.6 billion Malindi-Sala Gate road, the Sh.1.5 billion Sabaki-Marikebuni-Marafa road and the construction of an apron, a parking lot and fencing at the Malindi International Airport as some of the projects whose progress was impressive.
The Committee Chairman, Magu Mutindika said the 116-kilometer Malindi-Sala Gate road, which links Malindi Town and Tsavo East National Park in Taita-Taveta County, was 82 percent complete while the Sabaki-Marikebuni-Marafa road was 42 percent complete.
Mutindika, who is also the Kilifi County Commissioner (CC), said the government had completed the construction of an apron and a car park well as fenced the airport off at a cost of Sh.338 million and was in the process of acquiring additional land to expand the facility to enable bigger aircraft to land and take off with ease.
Earlier, the committee had also visited the Sh.4.9 billion Ronald Ngala Utalii College project in Vipingo area, Kilifi South Sub County, whose implementation status is at 53.08 percent.
Mutindika said the college, which has an expected capacity of 3,000 students, will start admitting students in September 2020.
“From our observations, the projects are being done well,” he said adding, “However, the contractors have been advised to fast track the implementation so that the projects are completed within the stipulated timelines,” he said.
In Malindi, the county boss said the government, through the Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) had spent Sh.418 million to compensate squatters on a 25-hectare parcel of land earmarked for the expansion of the airport.
The KAA was also in the process of acquiring an additional 130 hectares of land on the northern side of the airport with a view to expanding the main runway from the current 1.4 kilometres to 2.5 kilometres to enable bigger aircraft to land and take off with ease.
This, he said, would enable the airport to start receiving direct flights from Europe and other tourist markets and thus help revive the tourism sector in the resort town of Malindi.
The Airport Manager, Juma Karama said the civil works at the airport were 100 percent complete and that the car park, which is expected to hold 50 vehicles at a time, would soon be marked.
Karama explained that the airport did not have any scheduled direct flights although private jets had been landing and taking off directly from and to Europe.
He said the facility is able to handle big airplane the size of Boeng 737, but the same have to take off with passengers and fuel at the Moi International Airport in Mombasa since the plane is unable to take off with the weight of both passengers and fuel due to the shortness of the existing runway.
The Manager said the KAA would also increase the number of hangers (aircraft repair bays) to eight as well as relocate the fuel station, which he said was too close to the runway.
By Emmanuel Masha