The Cabinet Secretary for Transport and Infrastructure, James Macharia, led this year’s celebrations to mark World Engineering Day at the University of Nairobi. The CS said that Government of Kenya, through his ministry, plans to modernize aviation facilities to increase passenger-handling capacity to 9 million.
The Government will also expand railway transport to a capacity of 50% of the cargo freight from the port of Mombasa. The CS said that maritime facilities will be improved to facilitate the shipment of cargo. He also praised the role of local engineers, adding that they are integral in the realization of the Big Four Agenda and Vision 2030 economic blueprints.
The celebrations were organized by the Institution of Engineers of Kenya (IEK) in collaboration with the Engineers Board of Kenya (EBK). In 2019, UNESCO set aside March 4 as the day to celebrate engineers across the world, with the first such ceremony held last year. The theme of this year’s event was Engineering for a Healthy Planet: Celebrating the UNESCO Engineering Report.
“There is a need to design technologies and systems that can facilitate economic growth, education, enhance quality of life, help minimize poverty, ensure adequate food supply and reduction of the carbon footprint,” said CS Macharia.
According to the CS, other major projects planned include the construction and rehabilitation of 2,500 km of conventional roads and 7,500 km of low volume roads. This is in addition to maintenance of 161,456 km of roads, consisting of about 40,000 km of national trunk roads and 121,456 km of county roads.
The Government also plans to decongest cities and urban areas to ease congestion, reduce travel time and costs, and enhance connectivity. Plans are underway to develop a 50-Year Transport Master Plan and a 20-Year Roads Master Plan.
At the event, the Cabinet Secretary launched the inaugural issue of the Engineering in Kenya (EIK) magazine, which is published by IEK. The editorial board is chaired by Prof. Larry Gumbe.