In Summary
  • Some 2,987 workers have been fired, while 8,000 set to lose jobs if all cargo is ferried by train, report shows.

The government lost more than Sh126 billion in revenue in one year from Mombasa County since the introduction of freight trains, according to a new study released on Friday.

The study by the University of Nairobi (UoN) also revealed that more than 60 per cent of employees working at the Container Freight Stations (CFSs) were sacked over the same period.

The study further revealed that the coastal county is at “economic decay point”, with CFSs, long-distance trucks and transport related businesses such as fuelling and service stations mostly affected.

Presenting the assessment report on the socio-economic impact of the operationalisation of the standard gauge railway (SGR), UoN acting deputy vice chancellor, Prof Julius Ogeng'o, said the study shows the project has more negative effects on the economy of coastal people than good.

“We have met Mombasa governor Hassan Joho, Coast MPs and other port stakeholders and they have validated the report which has indicated the significant levels of negative impacts,” said Prof Ogeng’o who was accompanied by team leader Ken Ogolla.

In the report, a total of 2,987 employees working in CFSs, trucks and fuel stations have been laid off in the past one year while more than 8,111 workers are expected to be sent home if the directive is upheld.

Mombasa county will also fail to collect more than Sh17.3 billion due to closure of various businesses in the city while a number of businesses such as fuel stations, hotels and lodges along the Northern Corridor will be affected due to lack of patrons.

Mr Ogolla said the reported loss is as a result of the introduction of SGR freight trains and the order by the Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) and Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) that all imported cargo from the Port of Mombasa to Nairobi and other hinterlands be transported by rail.

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