What you need to know:
- He said as of May, the construction of the railway had reached 80 per cent, adding that the laying of tracks had so far covered a distance of 280 kilometres from Voi to Sultan Hamud.
The construction of the Sh327 billion standard gauge railway is expected to be completed earlier than expected.
Transport Principal Secretary Irungu Nyakera said the work is set for completion in March 2017, and not May next year, as earlier projected.
He said as of May, the construction of the railway had reached 80 per cent, adding that the laying of tracks had so far covered a distance of 280 kilometres from Voi to Sultan Hamud.
The government, he added, had already started acquiring locomotives, passenger coaches and wagons.
Mr Nyakera said 56 locomotives are set to be delivered from China before the end of the year.
He said of the 33 railway stations planned, some had already been completed.
They comprise 23 passing stations, eight intermediary stations and two major stations in Mombasa and Nairobi.
Mr Nyakera said the government was fast-tracking the construction of the inland container depot in Nairobi, with the ground-breaking ceremony expected to take place in September.
The PS said a Kenya Railways and Ministry of Transport team was doing due diligence on the operator in China and Australia.
He said the operator, John Holland, is from Australia.
The official added that after the completion of the railway construction, preparations for the launch of the railway services will begin.
“We expect President Uhuru Kenyatta to officially commission the project on Madaraka Day of 2017.”