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  • Writer's pictureDave Boniface

Chinese Zebra

Updated: Oct 1, 2022

Traveling from Jomo Kenyatta International after a two year plus covid enforced separation, reminds the visitor that Beijing has been rather busy with an awful lot of concrete.  Sixteen point eight miles of elevated elegant duel carriageway delicately connect the airport with the capital Nairobi and for a toll, pre-registered vehicles can gracefully rise above the Nairobi traffic carnage and reduce the city to airport travel time to around fifteen minute from anything up to three hours.
To date, the elevated  beltways remain remarkably void of user traffic despite the beckoning neon of the plentiful toll booths.  Preferring to take their chances and keep costs low, the majority of the ageing vehicles stick to the pot hole ridden six laner below, occupying the few vacated spaces made by those that can afford the toll demonstrating the best of trickle down economics in action; Besides Matatu would only struggle with the ramps.
China of course has generously signed a PPP declaring that the China Road and Bridge Company will recoup their investment after only twenty-seven years of tolls transferring what’s left to the Kenyan government. (*)
Our taxi opted for economy and took the down to earth freeway whilst narrowly avoiding a heard of Zebra that had wandered post dusk roadside from a nearby national park.

  • Matatu: Basic public mini bus service of questionable quality

  • PPP : Public Private Partnership

  • (*) South China Morning Post August 2022

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