Kenya Railways suspends SGR services over Uhuru cessation order
Kenya Railways has suspended Madaraka Express trains after President Uhuru Kenyatta ordered cessation of movements into and out of Nairobi, Kilifi, Kwale and Mombasa counties for 21 days.
President Kenyatta on Monday announced a new raft of stricter measures to combat the spread of Covid-19 in the country.
The two Standard Gauge Railway trains had been operating between Nairobi and Mombasa daily from 10.30am to 3.00pm.
“The two MADARAKA EXPRESS trains that operated daily at 10:30 am between Nairobi and Mombasa have been withdrawn forthwith,” read a statement from Phillip Mainga, Managing Director Kenya Railways.
Passengers who had already purchased tickets will receive a refund from the Kenya Railways Corporation following the cancellations.
However, the SGR and Meter Gauge Railway freight services will continue uninterrupted, according to the 24 hour schedule.
Further, the Nairobi Commuter Rail service to Ruiru, Embakasi, Syokimau, and Kikuyu stations will continue to operate normally.
Kenyatta banned movement by road, rail or air into and out of the Nairobi metropolitan area, with effect from Monday, April 6.
“The cessation of movement within the Nairobi metropolitan area shall be for an initial containment period of 21 days with effect from 7 pm on Monday, April 6, 2020,” He said on Monday.
He added: “The cessation of movement within the counties of Kilifi, Kwale, and Mombasa shall be for an initial containment period of 21 days with effect from 7 pm on Wednesday, April 8, 2020. In the intervening period, movement in and out of the Coastal strip shall be limited.”
On March 27, the head of state announced measures to tame coronavirus spread including a daily curfew from 7pm to 5am.
The railways corporation reduced services on the Madaraka Express passenger service between Mombasa and Nairobi.
They initially suspended the express train operating in the afternoon in both directions and left only one commuter train.
The changes also saw the Nairobi Commuter Rail Service schedule revised to cater for the new travel times.
The train to Nairobi CBD will depart Ruiru station at 6:10am, Embakasi village station at 7:05am; Syokimau station at 6:30am; Kikuyu station at 6am and Kahawa station at 9am.
In the evenings, the train to Ruiru station will depart CBD station at 4:20pm, Embakasi Village at 5:20pm, Syokimau station at 5pm, and Kikuyu station at 4:20pm.
The changes also saw the link train schedule adjusted and the train will now depart the CBD station at 8:30am to Nairobi Terminus and depart Nairobi Terminus for the CBD station at 4:30pm.