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Kisumu oil jetty a boost for regional business: The Standard

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NyanzaThe deal seeks to transform Kisumu into a regional commercial hub by leveraging on Lake Victoria as a key transport corridor.

The government has breathed life in the war to regain control of East Africa’s petroleum market by funding the Kenya Pipeline jetty in Kisumu with Sh1.7 billion. 

This comes after Transport Cabinet Secretary James Macharia said all fuel products be transported through the pipeline to Kisumu and thereafter transported through the lake to the East Africa bloc.
The move signals a return to maritime trade over the lake and the prospects of transforming Kisumu into a regional commercial hub. It has also been tipped to leverage Lake Victoria as a key transport corridor.
KPC is banking on the facility to regain the East African petroleum market share, part of which has been lost to Tanzania’s Central Corridor.
SEE ALSO: Kisumu oil jetty a boost for regional business
Since its technical handing over ceremony in December 2018, activities at the jetty have been low with an official telling Sunday Standard that business has struggled to pick up.
This has partly been attributed to delays by Uganda to complete its docking facilities at Jinja and Port Victoria. Controversies surrounding its construction has also clouded its success.
The jetty is expected to deliver petroleum products to Rwanda, Burundi, Uganda, Eastern DRC and parts of Tanzania.
Most suppliers have been relying on trucks that refuel at the KPC depot located next to the Kisumu Airport to ferry petroleum products to neighbouring countries.
However, all this is expected to change with the new directives as Kenya seeks to regain its share in the export market, which it is competing with Tanzania.
SEE ALSO: Retired Justice Ojwang’ to head Energy body
According to Macharia, the directives will come into effect on June 1 with the government also banking on its rail network system to transport other transit goods to neighbouring countries.
Transport route
“Fuel products will be transported by pipeline to Kisumu and thereafter by water through Lake Victoria to Port Bell or Jinja,” said Macharia.
And with the directives, hopes are high that the multi-billion jetty is finally set to live up to its expectations to help revamp oil trade in the region.
The construction of the jetty was shrouded in controversies over claims that the project was executed despite not being planned.
SEE ALSO: Kenyans slow down on power consumption
Should the oil trade pick up, the investment whose viability relies on Uganda’s docking facilities that evacuates Kenya’s oil products is expected to transform maritime trade.
In the last few months, a few tankers had started hauling oil products through the lake including MV Uhuru, which has made several trips to Port Bell in Uganda after it was repaired last year.
The 600-tonne 12-crew member ship was refurbished at the Kisumu dock and was reintroduced onto the lake in readiness for improved maritime trade.
KPC will also be looking to take advantage of the developments to put into use its 750,000-litre capacity boat, which has been reintroduced to exploit the growing blue economy.
Apart from the hauler, Uganda also has two tankers with capacities to carry four million litres and are among the vessels expected to boost oil trade between Kenya and her neighbours.
Blue economy
With the developments, residents are upbeat that the blue economy that once thrived when the old Kenya Railway line was operational will return.
David Arao, an MCA whose ward covers part of the port, said he was optimistic the developments will spur trade for local people.
“It is a blessing for us and we are hoping that business will pick up,” said Arao.
On the flip side, the developments is set to hurt truck drivers although it iss also set to reduce cases of harassment of Kenyan drivers in Uganda due to Covid-19.
The use of the lake will render road use inconvenient and may lead to the loss of some jobs, especially truck drivers and their turn boys.
Most of them have been refueling at the KPC depot, whose fuel capacity stands at 39 million litres, with the use of lake transport tipped to ensure that it’s fully exploited to serve the fuel demands by neighbouring countries.

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Beyond Zero, AMREF to train health volunteers on Covid-19 – KBC

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First Lady Margaret Kenyatta’s Beyond Zero initiative has teamed up with the African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF) to train 5100 community health volunteers to boost the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic.

KBC Radio_KICD Timetable

The one-month Covid-19 training for community health volunteers in Nairobi county sponsored by Beyond Zero at a cost of Kshs 4.5 million will be delivered virtually by AMREF through a digital learning platform called “Leap”.

Speaking Tuesday during the launch of the virtual training at the AMREF International University in Nairobi, Beyond Zero Coordinator Ms Angella Langat said the training comes at the right time when community health volunteers who are at the forefront of the Covid-19 response efforts require accurate information.

“This Covid-19 training is especially timely, as the world and Kenya grapple with the disease,” Ms Langat said.

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She expressed hope that the training will equip the community health volunteers with the necessary information and skills to help combat the spread of the virus.

“Her Excellency the First Lady’s Beyond Zero Initiative is honoured to be part of this process through the funding of the first cohort of community health volunteers. I thank the Ministry of Health, AMREF and respective teams for their commitment towards the development of this training curriculum,” Ms Langat said.

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Ms Langat pointed out that Beyond Zero’s interventions in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic is aligned to complement government efforts in promoting the health and wellbeing of Kenyans.

AMREF Enterprise CEO Caroline Mbindyo praised the partnership between Beyond Zero and her organization especially in the training of the community health volunteers, saying it will go a long way in scaling up efforts geared towards curbing the spread of Coronavirus in the country’s informal settlements.

Ms Mbindyo said AMREF has in collaboration with the Ministry of Health developed the curriculum for the training of community health workers, adding that the volunteers will access the training through their mobile phones free of charge.

Noting that there are about 70,000 community health volunteers in the country, Ms Mbindyo called on other organizations to emulate Beyond Zero and provide sponsorship for the training of the critical health providers across the country.

On her part, AMREF’s Community Training Liaison Officer Carolyne Wanyonyi said the training will enhance the awareness of the community health volunteers on Covid-19 and empower them with skills to help in the containment of the virus in their communities.

“The training will facilitate community health volunteers to be able to do risk assessment and they will also be able to know what needs to be done if an individual has been infected with the Coronavirus or is a suspected case,” Ms Wanyonyi said.

Ms Wanyonyi said the training has four modules with the first module focusing on what coronavirus is, its prevention, risks and transmission modes.

The second module will cover what the community health volunteers need to do in suspected Covid-19 cases.

The third module will look at the risks involved and the stigma associated with the disease in order to enable them counsel community members effectively.

The final module of the training will focus on community disease surveillance where the community health volunteers will learn about how to protect themselves from contracting Covid-19 in the course of their service delivery.

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Uganda moves to phased reopening amid rising Covid-19 cases

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CHARLES M. MPAGI

By CHARLES M. MPAGI
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Uganda will go ahead with its planned re-opening of the country despite recording more than 150 Covid-19 cases in three days, according to President Yoweri Museveni.

In an address to the nation on Monday evening, President Museveni said that public transport will resume but with necessary health and safety measures in place.

“We shouldn’t bite too much at a time. Opening for private cars has already unleashed big numbers of people moving. We have decided to postpone the opening of schools for another month,” Museveni said in his 15th address to the nation on Covid-19.

Buses and commuter taxis will resume on June 4 but will operate at half the capacity with commuters and operators “covering their mouth and nose all the time.”

Travel in districts bordering neighbouring countries is also not allowed for the next three weeks.

“For the next 21 days, no private or public transport is allowed in the border districts. There are forty districts in northern, northeastern, Bugisu, Bunyoro, Ankole and the Kigezi subregions,” added the president.

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Malls and stand-alone stores have also allowed been to reopen as long as clients observe physical distancing.

Schools, gyms, salons, bars and places of worship will remain closed for 21 more days.

Meanwhile, Uganda on Tuesday recorded 32 new Covid-19 cases raising the national tally to 489.

“Nineteen of the new confirmed cases are from 1,693 samples from points of entry while 13 are from 423 samples of contacts and alerts,” the Health Ministry said in a statement on Tuesday.

Fourteen new cases were recorded in Elegu, near South Sudan, two each in Busia and Malaba near the Kenyan border, while one was recorded in Mutukula near the border with Tanzania.

Thirteen of the new cases are contacts of previously confirmed cases. All patients are Ugandans.

“Currently, there are 391 admitted Covid-19 confirmed cases in 15 referral hospitals in the country. All are in stable condition,” the statement added.

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Uganda moves to phased reopening amid rising Covid-19 cases

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CHARLES M. MPAGI

By CHARLES M. MPAGI
More by this Author

Uganda will go ahead with its planned re-opening of the country despite recording more than 150 Covid-19 cases in three days, according to President Yoweri Museveni.

In an address to the nation on Monday evening, President Museveni said that public transport will resume but with necessary health and safety measures in place.

“We shouldn’t bite too much at a time. Opening for private cars has already unleashed big numbers of people moving. We have decided to postpone the opening of schools for another month,” Museveni said in his 15th address to the nation on Covid-19.

Buses and commuter taxis will resume on June 4 but will operate at half the capacity with commuters and operators “covering their mouth and nose all the time.”

Travel in districts bordering neighbouring countries is also not allowed for the next three weeks.

“For the next 21 days, no private or public transport is allowed in the border districts. There are forty districts in northern, northeastern, Bugisu, Bunyoro, Ankole and the Kigezi subregions,” added the president.

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Malls and stand-alone stores have also allowed been to reopen as long as clients observe physical distancing.

Schools, gyms, salons, bars and places of worship will remain closed for 21 more days.

Meanwhile, Uganda on Tuesday recorded 32 new Covid-19 cases raising the national tally to 489.

“Nineteen of the new confirmed cases are from 1,693 samples from points of entry while 13 are from 423 samples of contacts and alerts,” the Health Ministry said in a statement on Tuesday.

Fourteen new cases were recorded in Elegu, near South Sudan, two each in Busia and Malaba near the Kenyan border, while one was recorded in Mutukula near the border with Tanzania.

Thirteen of the new cases are contacts of previously confirmed cases. All patients are Ugandans.

“Currently, there are 391 admitted Covid-19 confirmed cases in 15 referral hospitals in the country. All are in stable condition,” the statement added.

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