Kenya to build $21 million port security system
MOMBASA, Kenya |
MOMBASA, Kenya (Reuters) - Kenya's main port of Mombasa, east and central Africa's main gateway will build a $21.4 million security system to safeguard the port from emerging threats of terrorism and pirates, managing director Gichiri Ndua said on Tuesday.
The project, jointly funded by the World Bank and Kenya, is intended to enhance security at the port by beefing up both land and sea surveillance, and improve screening of containers to check against counterfeit goods, drugs and other contraband.
"We recognise security at the port as key to our business ... we needed a system that would put virtually every activity at the port under central watch, and make it completely impossible for anybody to contemplate mischief anywhere around there," Ndua told Reuters.
"The port has been accused ...of being an entrance for illegal drugs and weapons into the country. This new state-of-the-art security system will be sorting that out as well."
The security project is being implemented by an Israeli company, Magal Security Systems, and is expected to be completed by March 2013, Ndua said.
The port's container traffic grew 24 percent in the first half of 2012, helped by improved cargo handling and a stabilising global economy, its operator said last month.
The port will start handling higher volumes by the end of this year after the completion of a new 5 billion shilling ($59.31 million) berth.
(Reporting by Joseph Akwiri; Editing by James Macharia and Sofina Mirza-Reid)
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