25 PEOPLE INJURED AS BRIDGE UNDER CONSTRUCTION IN WESTERN KENYA COLLAPSES

NAIROBI, At least 27 people have been injured, two critically, when a section of the Sigiri Bridge which is under construction in Busia County, about 445 kilometres northwest of here, collapsed on Monday morning.

The bridge which is being built at a cost of 1.2 billion shillings (about 11.6 million US dollars) in Budalang’i constituency of Busia County, was commissioned by President Uhuru Kenyatta a fortnight ago during his tour of Busia County.

Residents are blaming engineers for poor workmanship. Narrating their ordeal at the Port Victoria hospital, the victims complained of head, chest and back pains. However others were reportedly rushed to Nangina Mission Hospital for x-rays after it emerged that Port Victoria hospital does not have any X-Ray facility after it broke down over a year ago.

The cause of the collapse had yet to be established but eye witnesses said it is suspected that the construction work was hurriedly done ahead of the president’s visit to the project. The bridge is being constructed by China Overseas Construction and Engineering Company.

Meanwhile, a probe into the bridge collapse has been launched. Infrastructure Ministry Principal Secretary (Assistant Minister) John Mosonik said Tuesday the Kenya Rural Roads Authority had dispatched a team of engineers to the site to investigate the cause of the failure of the structure and will release more information as it becomes available.

He said construction activities on the site had been suspended until a structural integrity report was ready with investigative authorities roped in to determine if there was any foul play involved.

Two people are still admitted to the hospital while 25 others have been treated and discharged following the incident. Former Budalang’i MP Raphael Wanjala called for investigations into the workmanship of the project.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK