The efforts and rate at which the implementation of the construction of the East African railway line are far from encouraging, Dr James Ndahiro representing Rwanda in the East African legislative Assembly (EALA) has observed, noting that every country is only considering self-interests.
He has made the observation today in EALA –Kigali sitting discussing a report on the project of building a railway line connecting EAC.
Dr Ndahiro gave an example that it costs $1800 to transport a container from China to Dar es Salaam but takes $5200 from Dar to Kigali which demonstrates huge costs in regional trade.
Dr Ndahiro said that in the seventies and eighties es, the region had an operating trains that would carry 80% of cross-border merchandise.
“In the past, the railway connected the North and Southern Africa but the lines were damaged by Africans themselves,” he said.
“We have to seek ways of building and supervising our activities. The railway is not a huge thing because people who built it before were few, used our own people and executed it within a short time,” said Ndahiro.
“ It is nowadays taking us ten years thinking about a project, designing how it will be like, requesting loans everywhere where one comes to make a study plan while another comes to take measurements…”he said.
He explained that Africans have potential to build their infrastructures if they take strategic measures and work together.
“Why the delays yet the project of joint infrastructures was agreed. It seems every country is not doing enough to realize the fruition of this project. Is this the regional integration we want? There are several things to achieve together. Can the ministers’ council analyze the cause of this dragging and return to tell us what is happening?” he suggested.