The government has now turned to the African Union (AU) as it seeks investors and regional support for the Sh2.5 trillion Lamu Port-Southern Sudan-Ethiopia Transport Corridor (Lapsset) project.
Launched in 2012 during former President Mwai Kibaki’s regime, the mega project has been marred with cash constraints and lack of political good-will which has slowed down its implementation.
Ethiopia is seen to have shifted focus to the port of Djibouti. Road and rail infrastructure between the two countries including the Ethio–Djibouti railway passenger and freight system, which commenced on January 1, 2018, seem to have also shifted interest away from the Lapsset corridor.
It has now emerged the AU High Representative on Infrastructure Development Raila Odinga is keen to rally for support of the project.
According to the Lapsset Corridor Development Authority, a strong case has been made to the AU on the Lapsset project’s strategic position to connect not only Ethiopia and South Sudan, but also connecting to Central African Republic (Bangui) and Cameroon, terminating at Port of Douala.
“AU’s special envoy plans to convene a high level meeting with the countries that fall along Africa’s equatorial land bridge later in the year with an aim of forming these crucial transport infrastructure linkages within the continent,” the authority said in a statement last week.