JOB OPPORTUNITY - Infrastructure Desk: Rail Specialist/Project Manager

Deadline: 31 March 2019
Location: Johannesburg, South Africa
Duration: 1 year, renewable per annum


The NEPAD Business Foundation (NBF) is a non-profit company promoting sustainable economic development in Africa through the private sector. The NBF is a focussed on sustainable business for development connecting the public and private sectors and development agencies, and implementing innovative and sustainable projects in partnership with each other. In supporting African economic development and growth, NBF’s key focus areas mirror the NEPAD Planning and Coordination Agency’s (NEPAD Agency) development themes of agriculture and food security; climate change and natural resources management; economic and corporate governance; human development and capacity building; and regional integration and infrastructure.

The Africa Infrastructure Desk (Afri-ID)

The objective of the NBF Africa Infrastructure Desk is to facilitate the identification, development and implementation of infrastructure projects with specific focus on Transport and Energy related infrastructure, equipment and operations projects. The focus of the Afri-ID is to drive the interventions of the infrastructure platform by carrying out focused facilitation, stakeholder engagement, technical feasibility studies, project implementation and recommendation of relevant policy interventions.

Function and Purpose

The Rail Project Manager will drive the facilitation, project management and execution coordination work of the Afri-ID by managing projects within the Rail and other transport related projects as required. The Rail Project Manager will primarily be tasked with managing the development and implementation of rail operations, infrastructure and equipment related projects. Focus will be on SADC regional rail corridors, with specific focus on the North-South corridor.

Essential skills and capabilities

  • 10+ years’ experience in rail engineering or transport planning/project management
  • Relevant engineering or commerce degree,
  • Relevant experience in the infrastructure (rail, ports, pipeline, etc.) sectors in Africa,
  • Rail supply chain analysis, configuration and design,
  • Railway systems design and optimization
  • Rail operations,
  • Route capacity analysis and planning,
  • Railway information management, measurement and monitoring,
  • Transport / distribution and warehousing analysis and design,
  • Rail maintenance and contract management.
  • Operational costing, tariff structuring as well as operational readiness
  • Railway safety strategies and recovery plans
  • Ability to self-manage and meet deadlines.
  • Excellent co-ordination skills across different levels of stakeholders.
  • Ability to work within a team context.
  • Experience in working in Africa and dealing with governments, private sector, civil society and development agencies.
  • A good understanding of NEPAD, the African Union and current initiatives/developments of the NBF.

Principal Duties and Responsibilities

  • Project definition, structuring and concept development.
  • Management of rail infrastructure projects (early stage development).
  • Early stage project preparation and sourcing of project preparation funding.
  • Developing and managing terms of reference for external consultants.
  • Execution of complete procurement process to engage external consultants for technical feasibility studies.
  • Facilitating implementation of projects recommended by rail feasibility studies
  • Management of consultants appointed to execute rail feasibility studies
  • Facilitation of logistics and infrastructure optimization within the rail sector.
  • Engagement with Development Finance Institutions (DFIs) such as World Bank, DBSA, AfDB, KfW, EIB & GIZ.
  • Engagement with regional bodies such as SADC Secretariat, NEPAD Agency and Southern
  • African Railway Association (SARA) for regional support.
  • Lobbying with regional bodies such as SADC Secretariat and SARA Secretariat for support to develop infrastructure projects.
  • Thought leadership, research and presentations on rail sector developments.
  • Facilitation of smooth cooperation between public and private sector for development of rail infrastructure projects.
  • Lobbying for key policy issues within the rail sector e.g road to rail migration, truck overloading, rail operator financing etc.
  • Travel to multiple countries across Africa for stakeholder engagement, facilitation, research and data collection purposes.

Behavioural Qualities and Other Requirements

  • Versatility – ability to work across the board, changing functions as necessary.
  • Team orientation – working in an integrated team environment.
  • Consultative capabilities - able to work with all levels of people.
  • Resilience – maintaining composure and dealing effectively with pressure.
  • Flexible and adaptable – changing opinions / behaviour in the light of changing situations.
  • Methodical and systematic, with a strong attention to detail and accuracy.
  • Action-oriented, confident and show initiative.
  • Operate with integrity and ethics.
  • Delivery and deadline orientated.


Qualified applicants, please send your CV and a brief cover letter (no longer than one-page) to support your application along with salary expectations to . The subject line of your email submission must clearly state the following reference: REF RAIL001/2019.

The closing date for submission of applications is 31 March 2019. Please be advised that only shortlisted candidates will be contacted. Enquiries by telephone will not be accommodated. If you do not receive any feedback, please consider your application unsuccessful.


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