Some lawmakers are demanding to see more paperwork from a $5 billion loan deal with a Chinese bank that funded a rail line across the country. The 2011 deal was hidden from the public until Kenya’s Transport Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen released some pages on November 6, 2022.
Critics of the deal with the Export-Import Bank of China that funded the standard gauge railway say the pages show the Kenyan government has given too much legal authority to China, and lawmakers want Now find out whether Kenya has put up public facilities as collateral in the deal. .
A clause states that any major dispute over the rail line would be decided in Beijing, not Nairobi, although it is unclear whether this means Chinese authorities have the final say in such disputes.
The documents also show, among other things, that the Kenyan government was legally bound to keep the details of the deal secret.
Kenyan political analyst Javas Bigambo said it was illegal to compel the state to conceal such information from the public.
The approximately 600 kilometer long railway line, which connects the port city of Mombasa to the town of Naivasha 75 kilometers northwest of Nairobi, was opened five years ago. Critics say it is underutilized and has failed to generate the revenue or economic development that project developers envisioned. China accounts for a third of Kenya’s external debt, reports Victoria Amunga for Voice of America.