JUST A FEW DAYS

Vandals steal Sh500,000 road signs, lights, railings

Kura says signs, lights, signals, grills, dividers stolen in a few days for scrap metal

In Summary

• Destruction of road furniture is a serious economic crime that undermines road safety.

• The signs, railings, grills, lights and other furniture are sold to scrap metal dealers for a low price.

 

Thika Superhighway with signs, lights, guard rails, median rails - potential targets for vandals.
VANDALS' TARGETS: Thika Superhighway with signs, lights, guard rails, median rails - potential targets for vandals.
Image: FILE

Criminals increasingly are destroying and stealing road 'furniture' - signs, railings and lights - for scrap metal.

In the last few days, the Kenya Urban Roads Authority has lost Sh500,000 such equipment, endangering safety along new roads.

“Police have arrested two people destroying and stealing the median metal grills along newly dualled Ngong Road in Nairobi,” Kura’s director general Eng Silas Kinoti said in a statement.

Michael Maina, 35, and Joseph Lokenyi, 30, were arraigned before the Kilimani law court on Monday for destroying and vandalising road furniture. Accomplices were on the run.

Kura said another vandal was sentenced by a Madaraka court to two and half years in jail for vandalising the Outering Road.

“I urge motorist to drive carefully and I warn vandals the law will sooner rather than later catch up with them. They should prepare for the dire consequences of destroying public property,” Kinoti said.

He urged the members of the public to report vandalism immediately to authorities through online platforms.

Destruction of road utilities is a serious economic crime and undermines road safety.

Each year billions of shillings are lost through destruction and theft of street poles and lights, traffic lights, guard rails, road signs and drainage covers and slabs through vandalism and reckless driving.

“While the authority has put up stringent measures to mitigate this situation, it is disheartening for any sensible person to destroy what is meant to serve all, thus endangering  the lives of others,” Kinoti added.

Fixtures are taken to scrap metal dealers and sold for cheap prices.

The government invests more than Sh300 billion each year on road infrastructure for Vision 2030 and the Big 4 agenda to make Kenya a medium-level economy in 10 years.

(Edited by V. Graham)