Scandal over the border fence of Kenya, which cost $ 35 million for just 10 km



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At a length of only 10 km, the fence cost about $ 3 million per kilometer

Kenyan MPs asked how a 10-kilometer wire fence along the border with Somalia cost $ 35 million.

The government had originally promised to build a complex wall that runs for about 700 km along the border.

But the "wall" that was designed to prevent al-Shabab fighters from reaching Kenya became a wire fence that is only 10km long.

The Kenyan parliament has now closed the construction and calls for an investigation of the project.

What was the original plan?

When the plan was first announced in 2014, the government said it would build a 708 km wall consisting of a series of concrete barriers, fences, ditches and observation posts overlooked by CCTV stations.

Under the plan, the wall was to extend from the Indian Ocean to the border region of Mandera, where Kenya and Somalia meet Ethiopia.

The idea, according to the ministers, is to fight illegal trade and immigration – and above all to prevent al-Shabab militants in Somalia from entering Kenyan territory.

Kenya had suffered a series of devastating attacks from Al-Shabab – including one a massacre in a quarry in Mandera in December 2014in which 36 non-Muslims were killed.

Construction began one year later, 2015.

What was actually being built?

Four years later, there is a chain link and barbed wire fence that is only 10 km long – far from the originally promised mega wall.

And how much did it cost?

In total, it cost 3.4 billion Kenyan shillings – 35 million or 26 million pounds. At a length of 10 km, this is around $ 3 million per kilometer.

Ferdinand Omondi of the BBC in Nairobi notes that this is more than double the amount that the Kenyan government has made available this year for its strategic food reserves.

That's about $ 1 million more than general health care, and three times the amount it's earmarked for affordable housing.

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What did the Kenyan parliament say?

To put it mildly, the Kenyan MPs are not happy.

In Parliament, some politicians asked how effective a fence really could be to keep militants out of the country.

Others went further and said they suspected corruption – especially that officials could have used the al-Shabab threat to steal money from the public.

John Mbadi, Leader of Minorities in the Kenyan National Assembly, said a physical wall was a waste of money, adding, "Kenya should not finance the construction of such a wall, but invest in intelligence gathering intelligence to stop Al attacks -Shabab to prevent. "

Parliament has now blocked any further allocation of funds to the fence and demands that the state explain where the millions of dollars spent so far are.

The fence was erected under the supervision of the Kenyan military and its accounts are classified.