French Cameroun: World Bank Approves $330M for Rehabilitation of the Maroua-Kousseri Road 0

The World Bank approved financing of $330 million (CFA198.2 billion) for the rehabilitation of the Maroua-Kousseri road in Cameroon’s Far North region. “More than 920,000 people, including refugees and internally displaced persons, will benefit from the restoration of the Mora-Kousseri section (205 kilometers) on national road 1 (RN1), which will improve access to schools, health facilities, and markets,” said the Bretton Woods institution in an official statement.

The financing includes a credit of $280 million (CFA168.2 billion) from the International Development Association (IDA), World Bank’s concessional window, and a grant of $50 million (CFA30 billion) from the IDA window for host communities and refugees (WHR).

This is the second time the World Bank is funding the road’s rehabilitation. The first time, the works were hindered by structural delays and Boko Haram’s incursions in the Far North.

Military Engineering

Shortly after launching, the first attempt to repair the road was halted on May 16, 2014, after the Nigerian group of terrorists attacked the base life of Sinohydro, the then-contractor of the project. At the time, 10 of the Chinese firm’s staff members were kidnapped. Yaoundé, however, was able to have them released after tough negotiations.

Subsequently, Sinohydro promised on multiple occasions to return to the project but gave up. The government then trusted the project to the army, with the World Bank’s approval. Resumed in March 2018, the project was scheduled to be completed within 24 months but was delayed until early 2020. To speed up things, the Military Engineering team hired three subcontractors who especially worked on the 175 km long Mora-Dabanga-Kousseri section of the road.

Still, the project was not completed on the due date set by the World Bank–June 30, 2020. It was the date by which the Bank had set to close the line of credit it opened for the previous decade.

Source: Business in Cameroon