Baringo North Member of Parliament Joseph Makilap has said that the government has terminated the services of a contractor awarded a tender to construct the Kipsaraman-Kinyach-Arror road five years ago.
Makilap said that the government has taken the move to pave the way for the recruitment of a new contractor to bring to completion the Sh 1.8 billion, 52-kilometer road upgrade to bitumen standards that has stalled for the last four years.
Speaking at Moi Kabartonjo primary grounds, the MP said the new contractor will hit the ground as soon as the tendering and award process is completed.
The road traversing the arid and semi-arid parts of Baringo North and connecting it to the agriculturally rich Kerio Valley in the neighbouring Elgeyo Marakwet County stalled, with its completion rate standing at less than 50 per cent.
The legislator disclosed that the national government was in the process of opening up other security roads like Barwessa-Kinyach-Kolowa along the Kerio Valley floor ravaged by cattle rustling and Kasoiyo-Seretunin-Kasisit-Kampi ya Samaki connecting highlands to lowland zones, which has already commenced.
He noted that the security roads, especially the Kipsaraman-Arror one, are expected to open up the arid regions for accelerated development and also help in stamping out cattle rustling and banditry activities that have become a thorn in the flesh for communities residing in these parts.
“The roads are also intended to help farmers, especially livestock keepers and horticultural growers, access urban markets for their agricultural produce such as honey, groundnuts, green grams, pawpaws, mangoes, bananas, and tomatoes,” said Makilap.
Governor Benjamin Cheboi, in his address, encouraged residents residing in the fragile ecological zones of Kerio Valley and hanging escarpments to engage in alternative livelihoods to charcoal burning that are environmentally sustainable.
Cheboi cited beekeeping and the planting of fruit trees as enterprises that generate good incomes. “Towards this end, a total of 31,000 mango seedlings have so far been distributed to the farmers, a venture that we shall expand to other fruit crops in high quantities,” the Governor stressed.
The county boss also pointed out that his government will empower reformed bandits, especially those in Tiaty constituency, by giving them soft loans to enable them to start alternative income-generating activities.
By Joshua Kibet