Kenya Japan Alumni Association (KEJAA) Educational Tour to Mombasa


Since the establishment of the Kenya and Japan diplomatic relations in 1963, Kenya has warmly enjoyed the Japanese Development Assistance (ODA) under technical assistance, grants and concessional loans. The key thematic areas are mainly economic infrastructure, agriculture, health, education, and environment. This development cooperation is encrypted within the Fifth Tokyo International Conference on Africa Development (TICAD), Yokohama Action Plan and TICAD VI Nairobi Declaration and its implementation Plan.

For over 50 years, many Kenyans have been privileged to travel to Japan for education and international exchange programs in different fields of study. The aim has been to empower Kenyans with technical skills and capacity to promote proper and sustainable national development. Kenyans have been inspired by the precision, excellency, effectiveness and humility of the Japanese culture and truly the impact of this unique program is evident in Kenya. The Kenya Japan Alumni Association (KEJAA), for nine years has aspired to promote the kind of relationship ushered by Japan through various forms.

This year, through the assistance of the Embassy of Japan in Kenya, KEJAA organized an education tour to Mombasa scheduled between the 7th to 10th November 2019. This is like a refresher course for members and the objective of the tour was mainly to visit capital projects that were funded by the Japan government and networking of members. The members left Nairobi on Thursday the 7th of November at 2:00pm enroute Mombasa. The projects visited were the site of Mombasa gate bridge, the Mombasa Port Container Terminal, the Mombasa Port Area Road Development Project at Dongo Kundu and Kilifi bridge. Indeed members were  thrilled by the organization and the quality of  work displayed by the Japanese companies. Further these projects have  immensely benefited the society as well as improving the competitive index of Mombasa City as explained below:-

Mombasa port container terminal

Mombasa port is the gateway to Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda, Burundi, South Sudan, Northern Tanzania, Eastern DRC, Ethiopia and Somalia. The port serves over 33 shipping lines that call regularly and provides connectivity to over 80 Sea Ports Worldwide. In 2018, the port recorded a throughput capacity of 30,923, container traffic of 1, 303, 862 with an increased rate of 6.5% and traffic transit of 9, 605 with a rate increase of 7.5%. Adhering to its vision of providing efficient and competitive port services to facilitate Global Maritime Trade, the Mombasa port has indeed stimulated economic growth at the coast as well as in other economic sectors, enhanced infrastructure development and precipitated trade promotion across borders thus linking the Kenyan Coast to the rest of the World.
The importance of the port
Transit market share of KPA

Under the support of JICA, The Ministry of Industrialization completed a 30-year Master Plan (2018-2048) for the SEZ and Free Port at Dongo Kundu that is under implementation.  Further, JICA supported the feasibility study for the Phase I development of the Dongo Kundu SEZ and it is envisaged that the construction works for the first berth (DK1) will catalyze development of SEZ and facilitate industrialization and trade. The port has also impacted to the immediate community directly by providing employment opportunities and indirectly by development of schools, hospitals and recreation parks for the community.

Mr Mutuku making a presentation to the participants
on arrival at KPA offices

Mombasa Port Area Road Development Project at Dongo Kundu

The project is divided into three packages namely:

i) Package - 1: Miritini - Mwache - Kipevu

This road shall connect Mombasa Road (A8), Northern corridor and Mombasa Port
The development commenced on 17th May, 2015 and under the defects liability period.

Eng Kamau of Katahira consultants, explains how
Package 1 Road was constructed at the Miritini interchange


ii) Package - 2: Mwache - Tsunza - Mteza (Dongo Kundu)

This road shall link the Mombasa island and the South Coast through Tsunza in Kwale.
The project was scheduled to commence in November 2019 (and it indeed did) and expected to be complete by 2023.

Package 2 project that has just begun

iii) Package - 3: Mteza – Kibundani

The road will usher a connection from Dongo Kundu free trade Zone to Lunga Lunga (A7) road.
The development commenced in March 2019 and construction is underway.
The project commenced in 2010 and since 2011 JICA supported in review of the feasibility reports and surveys, updating of the designs, tendering, construction and supervision of the development. This project aims at:  

Kilifi Bridge

The construction of the Kilifi bridge was funded by the Japanes Government and has enhanced the socio-economic growth of the Kilifi town. The bridge provides efficiency in transportation thus promotion of trade between Kilifi, Malindi and Mombasa.

Members at Kilifi Bridge

Eng Mbithi of KeNHA, explains at Kilifi Bridge


On Friday evening, members had a wonderful seminar. During this time, four members made presentations on their experiences in Japan. This was a very important session as it also allowed members to interact and network one with another. Members and invited guets shared a wide scope of experiences and inspirations acquired in Japan. We were indeed inspired by how how members were applying the learnt skills and knowledge to improve the livelihoods of people in rural Kenya and also solving of societal challenges. Almost all the members hinted to the fact that they would be glad to visit Japan again, given a chance. A total of 35 people participated in this event held at PrideInn hotel, Mombasa. They included 27 KEJAA members, representatives from KPA and KeNHA and from Katahira and Engineers International (Consultant for the entire road network construction).
Mr Shileche addressing the participants during the seminar
Participants listening keenly to the presentations during the seminar


KEJAA members enjoyed the trip and passed warm regards of appreciation to the Embassy of Japan for the support. They wished that this would be an annual event to give members more time for interaction and networking and be ble to spur one another to influencing the people around us positively. In this meeting, members also discussed on how they can come up with a proposal on registering a KEJAA institute. This will be discussed more during our 2020 AGM. On the morning of Sunday 10th of November, members travelled back to Nairobi. They were all very excited for the very informative and educative tour and looked forward to another one next year.