Africa > Central Africa > Cameroon > Over 60 KM of Batchenga-Ka a Rail Line Refurbished , Cameroon

Cameroon: Over 60 KM of Batchenga-Ka a Rail Line Refurbished , Cameroon

2015/08/12

The 22nd ordinary session of the Inter-ministerial Committee in charge of Railway Infrastructure, COMIFER, met on August 7, 2015, in Yaounde, to assess the level of evolution of projects. The get-together under the chair of COMIFER President who happens to be the Minister of Transport, Robert Nkili, saluted strides made since the 21st session that met on May 26, 2015.

On the table for scrutiny was the follow-up of recommendations, presentation of the decision creating an ad-hoc committee for the elaboration of the second phase of the 2016-2020 investment projects to modernize railway infrastructure, the level of evolution of plans to have automatic railway crossing safety barriers in Douala and Yaounde, amongst others.

It emerged from discussions that work on the Batchenga-Ka'a railway was progressing with over 60 km of the 175 km line by presently rehabilitated. Robert Nkili rejoiced at the level of collaboration between engineers of the Bolloré Group subsidiary, Cameroon Railways, Camrail and National engineers in the acceleration of work on the Batchenga-Ka'a line. But the Minister said the quest to modernize the country's railway infrastructure goes beyond that stretch, stressing that the Douala Ngaoundere rail line was as well due refurbishment.

Camrail's General Manager, Quentin Gerard assured COMIFER members of his company's commitment to buy additional coaches and locomotives as any minute at this time as possible. The committee revealed that it was approaching Chinese banks to source for funding for the acquisition of 15 passenger carriages, five railcars and three locomotives.

Cameroon will be hosting the 2016 and 2019 African Cups of Nations and facilitating the movement of people/spectators and goods from one town to the other is primordial, reason why COMIFER is urging Camrail to accelerate the process to acquire additional passenger equipment. With regard to the putting in place of a modern railway station in Yaounde, Quentin Gerard unveiled the project plan, revealing that the architectural design is expected by mid October, the bid will be launched by the end of this year while work is expected to begin in June 2016.

Minister Robert Nkili said the Government Delegate to the Yaounde City Council and Camrail were working to make the project feasible, meanwhile the procedure to fasten funding is well on course. COMIFER pressed Camrail to accelerate the project to put in place automatic railway crossing safety barriers at Nyalla in Douala and the General Hospital area and Obobogo in Yaounde. Camrail's General Manager in response said the project was earmarked for execution this year.

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