Laikipia Benefits From A WB Funded Project To Enhance Skills


Laikipia county is among counties that will benefit from a World Bank project that seeks to enhance a broad range of technical skills.


The project known as East Africa Skills for Transformation and Regional Integration Project (EASTRIP) is being implemented by the Kenya Institute of Highway Building and Technology (KIBHT), among other institutions.


In November last year, KIHBT opened a training center at Gachuiro, Umande ward after the County Government offered land.


EASTRIP is geared towards supporting the development and delivery of demand driven TVET programs for technician training in Kenya, Ethiopia and Tanzania in transport, energy, manufacturing and ICT Sectors. It will offer support to industry recognized short term training.


The overall goal of EASTRIP is to support countries in developing sufficient national skills that can catalyze economic development, regional trade and integration.


EASTRIP received a grant of $293 million from the World Bank to improve the technical training in East Africa. In Kenya, KIBHT will benefit from Kshs. 9 billion.


The Umande center will offer much needed technical training in areas of highways technology to the youths in the Laikipia and the surrounding counties.


The regional approach by EASTRIP aims at developing the specialized TVET skills by creating a small cluster of regional TVET centers. These centers will specialize in specific sectors offering short term courses recognized in the industry.


These efforts were necessitated by the 2015 World Bank Enterprise Surveys that covered 25% of formal firms and established that the major constraint the firms faced was an inadequately educated workforce.


The training center will offer the same technical courses as TVET which is geared in promoting social inclusiveness and poverty alleviation as it tends to attract students from lower social economic background who have lower probabilities of reaching higher education.


The Umande center will offer course touching on the transport sector which has been identified as having shortage of specialized TVET skills. The shortage has been blamed for slowing down industrialization agenda.


The County Government of Laikipia will take advantage of these skilled workforce to undertake major renovations in the towns and assist the country to bridge the gap that currently exist.


The training will help the County Government to implement Smart Town Initiative which is geared towards making towns in Laikipia people friendly, more habitable and attractive for investment.


The idea of Smart Towns is necessitated by need for them to be paved, have proper design, street lights and necessary utilities Governor Ndiritu Muriithi said.


He says that the training center will offer technology such as use of cobble stones to improve the towns. Cobble stones are long lasting, this will enable the County Government to build better roads and that are more durable. The training will also create jobs for the among the youths.


Governor Muriithi also notes that Laikipia have over slightly 7000 km of classified roads of which only about 2500 km with murram. This creates the need to improve the road network within the county.


EASTRIP in partnership with KIBHT will help Laikipia to develop, implement and monitor the process of skill transfer to youths and contractors working with the County Government to fill the skills gap in the infrastructure sector.


In near future we will be asking, how many people have been trained in cobble stone technology? And of those, how many kilometres of road have they built? , Governor proposes.


The next thing he says is that there is need to go beyond just building roads to outcomes and impacts.


There must be impact or transformation that have been achieved by the residents after work is complete.


We will need to know how those roads built are assisting and serving the residents of Nyahururu or Marmanet, he said.


(Source: CGL E-Newsletter)

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