In Summary
  • Mr Odinga said his biggest target will be to complete the 60,000km Trans African Highway

  • He also lauded other infrastructural breakthroughs on the continent, including the opening of the modern railway line between Ethiopia and Djibouti.
  • Mr Odinga referred to his historic March 9 handshake with President Uhuru Kenyatta, which he said had helped chart a new course.

Mr Raila Odinga has said he will continue championing the fight against corruption and for the growth of democracy in Africa following his appointment as the continent’s High Representative for Infrastructure Development.

Mr Odinga said his biggest target would be the completion of the 60,000-kilometre Trans African Highway that would lead to increased trade among African countries.

These, he said, could only be possible in a continent that fights graft and allows for exercise of democratic freedoms.

HIGHWAYS

Launched in 1971, the ambitious Trans-African roads plan was to see a combination of nine highways connect the continent from all the corners. Only one of the nine — the 4,500 kilometres between Dakar in Senegal and N’Djamena in Chad — has been completed.

“I strongly believe that the existence of a reliable infrastructure of roads and railways, running North to South, and East to West of Africa, is critical to opening up the continent and making it the gateway to the 21st century,” Mr Odinga said at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina, in the United States, where he delivered a lecture on Tuesday.

He was named to the top African job on October 20.

INTEGRATION

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