- CS said completion of the long-delayed highway will be early next year.
- Murkomen denied the road would be shortened and said all road projects started by the previous administration would be completed.
Construction of the 68-kilometre Thika-Mang’u Flyover road will be completed by early next year, Roads Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen has said.
The CS said the government has injected sufficient resources and the contractor now is working around the clock to complete it on time.
Speaking at Kamwangi town in Gatundu North while inspecting the road progress, Murkomen sought to allay fears the road will stall again and residents and motorists will suffer for months or years.
Rumours had been spreading across the region the government was planning to construct the road only up to Gakoe Centre, instead of building a flyover as scheduled. The CS denied the rumour.
Construction started in 2019 but stalled a few months later, paralysing transport and disrupting economic activities of the region. The road has been centre stage of protests as residents accuse the contractor of being sluggish.
The road had stalled for three years and was almost forgotten.
“I found banana stalks were planted in the road in protest,” CS Murkomen said.
“I spoke with Kiambu leaders and they decided projects in the region would be completed,” he said.
“We will ensure it is completed up to Magumu as scheduled,” he said.
The CS said 20km have been completed. Roads within major town centres in Gatundu North, including Mangu and Kamwangi will be tarmacked, he said.
Murkomen was accompanied by Kiambu Senator Karungo wa Thang'wa and Gatundu North MP Elijah Njoroge Kururia.
Retarmacking is intended to decongest the Nairobi Metropolitan area by linking the Thika Superhighway with the Nairobi-Nakuru highway.
Senator Thang'wa said the Kenya Kwanza government has agreed to complete all road projects initiated by the previous administration.
“We met with the CS and he gave us an assurance that all roads will be completed so we can open up our region and boost our economy,” Thangwa said.
MP Kururia called on the CS to prioritise resumption of the 50km Marige-Kandakomu-Gatei-Kamunyaka-Gakoe road in Githobokoni ward. The road is part of the Mau Mau Road Lot 1B.
Works stalled after the contractor, China Railways Company, claimed non-payment.
The MP also urged the CS to intervene and ensure recarpeting of the Gatukuyu-Kairi-Mataara road, which was launched by President William Ruto when he was Deputy President in 2018.
He said the road is riddled with potholes and is yet to be completed.
Meanwhile, Murkomen called on motorists, and especially boda boda riders, to strictly comply with traffic rules and regulations, saying road deaths in accidents have been increasing.
He said out of the 5,000 road accidents recorded in a year, 1,500 boda boda riders and 800 pillion passengers were victims.
“I am pleading with all motorists, and especially our boda boda operators, to be extra cautious and follow traffic rules because we are losing a lot of riders and passengers,” Murkomen said.
Residents led by Njoroge Mwangi, popularly known as Muteti, praised the government for prioritising the project, saying it will turn around the economy in the region.
“Most are farmers and they will now take their produce to the markets with ease. Transport will be improved and businesses will boom,” Muteti said.